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BY THE SAME AUTHOR 

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THE LIFE OF 

EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH, D.D. 
BISHOP AND POET 



THE LIFE OF 
EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

D.D. 

BISHOP AND POET 

AUTHOR OF "PEACE, PERFECT PEACE," 
"YESTERDAY, TO-DAY AND FOR EVER" 

BISHOP OF EXETER 18851900 



BY 

FRANCIS KEYES AGLIONBY, M.A. 



YICAR OF CHRIST CHURCH, WESTMINSTER 
ONE OF HIS EXAMINING CHAPLAINS 



WITH PHOTOGRAVURE PORTRAIT 
AND 5 OTHER ILLUSTRATIONS 




LONGMANS, GREEN, AND CO. 

39 PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON 

NEW YORK, BOMBAY, AND CALCUTTA 

1907 

All rig-fits reserved 



TO 

ELLEN S. BICKERSTETH 

WITH THE AFFECTION AND 
GRATITUDE OF 

THE AUTHOR 



PREFACE 



THE preface to a biography is oft-times little else 
than an attempt to justify its publication. He 
who writes the life of such a man as Bishop 
Bickersteth need make no such apology. It is 
quite another question how far a writer has been 
successful in the portraiture which he has tried to 
give. Whatever may be the value of this effort, it 
is humbly offered as a grateful tribute to the 
memory of a highly honoured servant of God, and 
as a record for those who shall come after, of the 
noble work which he did for the Church in his 
generation. It would be an affectation were I to 
profess to have given a detached view of one, the 
fascination and the magnetism of whose personality 
exercised so strong an influence upon those who 
came within its range. 

A biographer should speak from knowledge : 
he must not have too much to say : he should not 
say too much : he must let the subject of the book 
speak for himself. 

As one who had close and frequent intercourse 
with Bishop Bickersteth for more than thirty years, 
having been his Curate and one of his Examining 
Chaplains, I am able to speak of him from personal 



x PREFACE 

knowledge. His papers and correspondence have 
been freely placed at my disposal by the members 
of his family, who have rendered me every assist 
ance in their power. My grateful acknowledgments 
are also due to many others for their kindness in 
contributing reminiscences and appreciations, to 
gether with the use of letters. 

And further, it is required of a biographer that 
he should not have too much to say : he must not 
be prolix. The readers of this book will judge for 
themselves how far I have profited by the chorus 
of warnings given me under this head from the 
outset. 

And again, a biographer ought not to say too 
much : he must be discreet. Herein, too, none of 
us can " see oursels as ithers see us." It is 
difficult to hit the true mean, to know where to 
stop or what to omit. Those who knew Bishop 
Bickersteth will readily believe that there could be 
few passages to soften down in what he spoke or 
wrote. In some instances they are rare in which 
he is quoted as speaking or writing in strong terms, 
I have thought it best to leave the passages as 
they stood. He never forgot the rule of charity. 

This book is sent forth with the earnest prayer 
that the great Head of the Church will vouchsafe 
His abundant blessing in the accomplishment of 
the purpose with which it has been written. Bene- 
dictus benedicat. 

F. K. AGLIONBY. 

CHEIST CHURCH. 

WESTMINSTER, 

September 1, 1907. 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER I 

1825-1848 

PAGE 

Parentage Eev. Edward Bickersteth Watton Life at the Rectory 
Education Recreations Visits Early religious impressions 
Cambridge Recollections by Prof. J. E. B. Mayor Remi 
niscences of the Bishop by the Rev. E. B. Birks Degree Prize 
poems Ordination Marriage 1 

CHAPTER II 

1848-1873 

Banningham Parish work Hinton Martell Hampstead Recollec 
tions Bereavements Personal influence Organization Visit 
to America 16 

CHAPTER III 

1873-1885 

Later years at Hampstead His eldest son goes to India Letters 
Tour to India and Palestine Attendance at Church Congresses 
Missions Clerical Friends in Council . 81 



CHAPTER IV 

1885-1900 

Deanery of Gloucester Nomination to the See of Exeter Farewells 
at Hampstead Consecration Enthronement Confirmations 
Ordinations Relations with his clergy The Cathedral The 
Chapter Hospitality Church Congress 53 



xii CONTENTS 

CHAPTER V 

1885-1900 

PAGE 

Home life at Exeter Letters Lambeth Conference Death of Bishop 
Edward Bickersteth of South Tokyo Recollections Presenta 
tion of portrait 79 

CHAPTER VI 

1848-1900 

Literary work " Yesterday, To-day and For Ever " Analysis of the 
Poem Its Reception Other Verse The Hymnal Companion 
Its Characteristics The Bishop on Hymnology " Prom Year 
to Year" "Peace, perfect Peace" Commentary on the New 
Testament The " Rock of Ages " " The Spirit of Life " " The 
Master s Home Call" "The Shadowed Home" "The Feast 
of Divine Love " " Thoughts in Past Years " 99 



CHAPTER VII 

1848-1906 

Missionary enthusiasm Visits to India and Palestine, 1880 To 
Japan, 1891 Extracts from letters and diaries Mr. Eugene 
Stock s notes on the Bishop s connection with the Church Mis 
sionary Society 136 



CHAPTER VIII 

1900-1906 

Resignation Diocesan Conference Resolutions Freedom of the 
City of Exeter Removal to London Illness Death Tributes 
Recapitulation 171 



CONTENTS xiii 

APPENDIX I 

PAGE 

COBBESPONDENCE ON ADDITIONAL VEBSE TO " LEAD, KlNDLY LlGHT " 198 

APPENDIX II 

ON THE UNFINISHED EDITION OF THE COMMENTARY 200 

APPENDIX III 

BBIEF NOTE ON BISHOP EDWARD BICKERSTETH, OF SOUTH TOKYO, 

BY MB. EUGENE STOCK 204 

APPENDIX IV 

PASSAGES FROM THE BISHOP S CHARGES OF 1888 AND 1895 . 206 



Proposed Inscription for a Memorial Brass to the Bishop in Exeter 

Cathedral . 214 



BIBLIOGRAPHY 215 



INDEX . 217 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 

PORTRAIT OP BISHOP BICKERSTETH .... Frontispiece * 

Fro m a Painting by A. S. COPE, in tke potion of MR S. SiCK^T 

CHRIST CHURCH, HAMPSTEAD, AND VICARAGE ... 22 

EXETER CATHEDRAL AND BISHOP S PALACE .... 67 

THE BISHOP WITH Two OP HIS GRANDCHILDREN, 1886. . . 78 
EXETER CATHEDRAL AND PALACE-EAST VIEW . 98 

WATTON CHURCH . 

179 



FACSIMILE OF HYMN " PEACE, PEEFECT PEACE." 

PEACE, perfect peace, in this dark world of sin ? 
The Blood of Jesus whispers peace within. 

Peace, perfect peace, by thronging duties pressed ? 
To do the will of Jesus, this is rest. 

Peace, perfect peace, with sorrows surging round? 
On Jesus bosom nought but calm is found. 

Peace perfect peace, with loved ones far away? 
In Jesus keeping we are safe and they. 

Peace, perfect peace, our future all unknown ? 
Jesus we know, and He is on the throne. 

Peace, perfect peace, death shadowing us and ours? 
Jesus has vanquished death and all its powers. 

It is enough ; earth s struggles soon shall cease. 
And Jesus call us to heaven s perfect peace. 



THE LIFE OF 

E. H. BICKERSTETH, D.D. 

BISHOP AND POET 

CHAPTER I 

1825-1848 

Parentage Rev. Edward Bickersteth Watton Life at the Rectory 
Education Recreations Visits Early religious impressions 
Cambridge Recollections by Prof. J. E. B. Mayor Reminiscences 
of the Bishop by the Rev. E. B. Birks Degree Prize poems- 
Ordination Marriage. 

"The generation of the faithful shall be blessed." 

PSALM cxii. 2. 

"The Child is father to the Man." 

WORDSWORTH. 

EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH was born on the 
Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul, January 25, 
1825. His father was the Rev. Edward Bicker 
steth, assistant secretary of the Church Missionary 
Society, and his mother Sarah, eldest daughter of 
Mr. Thomas Bignold of Norwich. They lived 
in Barnsbury Park, Islington, then bordered by 
fields which stretched away to the heights of 
Highgate and Hampstead. 

And here the beaten track of biographers must 
be followed, since all who are interested in a career 
are concerned to know such particulars as may be 
summed up under the hackneyed terms, heredity 



2 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

and environment. It is easier to exaggerate or 
disparage these factors than to assign to each its 
proper scope in the growth and development of a 
character. Let it be granted, indeed, that per 
sonality with its fundamental attributes comes in 
every case direct from the hand of God, that what 
ultimately decides a life is from within. But there 
are also unmistakable tokens of "the divinity which 
shapes our ends," both in the traits and tendencies 
which are transmitted by a man s forefathers, and 
in the circumstances which do so much to modify 
character, and to give it direction, even where they 
cannot determine it. 

The branch of the Bickersteth family from 
which the Bishop was descended, settled at Kirkby 
Lonsdale in Westmoreland in the latter half of 
the eighteenth century. Its descent can be traced 
to Ralph Bickerstaff, high sheriff of Lancashire, 
who fought under Henry Tudor at Bosworth 
Field. Henry Bickersteth, the grandfather of the 
Bishop, a surgeon at Kirkby Lonsdale in West 
moreland, had a remarkable quartette of sons. 
One of these was John Bickersteth, widely known 
in his generation as a devoted clergyman, whose 
sons were Edward Bickersteth, Dean of Lichfield, 
and Robert Bickersteth, Bishop of Ripon. Another, 
Henry, was Senior Wrangler at Cambridge in 
1808. He became a barrister, and rising to the 
Mastership of the Rolls, he was created Baron 
Langdale. He refused the Lord Chancellorship. 
Robert, the youngest son, became a surgeon of 
eminence in Liverpool, and Edward, the Rector 
of Watton, was father of the Bishop. It is 



EARLY YEARS 3 

impossible to dispose of such a career as that of 
Edward Bickersteth, of Watton, in a paragraph 
or two ; for his zeal and devotion and what he 
made his home to become, had a powerful 
formative influence upon the training of his son. 
The soil in which a tree grows does not account 
for the tree itself, but it has much to do with its 
growth and with the flavour of its fruit. 

Edward Bickersteth, the father of the Bishop, 
began his career in the post-office in London, early 
in the year 1800. Shortly afterwards he determined 
to become a solicitor, and gave himself to the 
duties of his profession with the utmost diligence 
until his call to the ministry in 1815. For some 
years previously he had carried on religious work 
with great earnestness and success as a layman. 
He was ordained deacon by the Bishop of Norwich, 
and within a week, priest by letters dimissory at 
Gloucester. He accepted the post of assistant 
secretary to the Church Missionary Society and 
was forthwith sent out by the committee to 
inspect their missions in West Africa. Those who 
selected him for such a work had judged rightly 
of his qualifications, for besides the glow and 
enthusiasm of missionary zeal, he had the know 
ledge of men and of the world which a pro 
fessional training of many years had given him. 

He admitted the first of the society s converts 
to the Holy Communion, and the experience 
which he gained of the trials and difficulties of a 
missionary life, as well as of the stifling atmosphere 
of a heathen environment, did much to equip him 
for the extraordinary services which he rendered 



4 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

to the cause of missions during the remainder of 
his life. 

He entered upon his duties as secretary, residing 
in Salisbury Square and superintending the train 
ing of missionaries. He also ministered regularly 
at Wheler Chapel in Spitalfields, and began work 
for the society as a deputation, in almost every 
part of England. The hearts of people opened 
everywhere to him in a wonderful degree ; he 
seems to have combined the fiery zeal of a Paul 
with the sympathy and tenderness of a Barnabas. 

In 1830 he was nominated to the parish of 
Watton, in Hertfordshire, by John Abel Smith, 
Esq., of Woodhall Park, whither he removed from 
Barnsbury Park in the autumn of that year, and 
where he spent the remaining twenty years of his 
life. Besides the diligent work of a country pastor, 
he supported a number of societies, amongst others 
the Bible Society, the Society for Promoting 
Christianity among the Jews, the Pastoral Aid 
Society, and the Evangelical Alliance. 

He also threw himself with great energy into 
literary work, and his books, such as the Treatises 
on Prayer and on the Lord s Supper, and his 
hymnal, had a vast circulation. 

Watton is a village of much quiet beauty, its 
houses straggling along the old high-road from 
London to the north through Stevenage and 
Hitchin. The picturesque thirteenth - century 
church nestles under the hill to the west, some 
quarter of a mile away, with its massive tower 
amidst trees which partly hide it from view. The 
beautiful avenue of elms which now leads to the 



EARLY YEARS 5 

church, was planted by the Bickersteths soon 
after they came to Watton. 

The commodious old rectory stands a few yards 
above the churchyard to the south-west. Edward 
Henry Bickersteth was five years old when the 
family moved thither. His physique was vigorous, 
and his disposition remarkable for the buoyancy 
and joyousness which he retained throughout his 
life. 

He was nurtured from the outset in an atmo 
sphere which was deeply religious and thoroughly 
consistent. Precept and example were closely 
interwoven in the lives of those who watched over 
his opening years, and gave him his first im 
pressions of eternal things. Truly in a sense 
transcending Wordsworth s meaning of the words, 
" Heaven lay about him in his infancy." 

A glimpse of the home life at Watton Rectory 
is given in some recollections, which were com 
mitted to writing more than sixty years ago by 
his younger sister Emily. 1 Edward, then about 
fifteen, and another boy of his own age, the son 
of a friend, were reading together for the uni 
versity with a tutor. The rkgime, though quiet, 
was one of great activity, the house being likened 
to a bee-hive, so busily were its inmates occupied. 
For them " life was real, life was earnest ; " there 
was no stagnation, every one seeming to realize 
that " still waters turn no mills." 

The little narrative somewhat quaintly says 

" At 5.30 every morning an alarum clock went 
off, and roused Edward, who tumbled half asleep 

1 Mrs. Durraut. 



6 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

into his shower-bath, and soon roused his sisters 
by vigorous knocks at their doors. In an hour s 
time all were down stairs, the boys at work with 
their tutor, the other members of the family astir 
at their employments. The Rector himself spent 
part of this time in a retired walk above the garden, 
engaged in his devotions. At 7.50 he returned from 
his walk and gathered his children into his study 
where each one repeated passages from the Holy 
Scriptures of their own choosing, some of them in 
this way learning whole books of the Bible." 

The Bishop himself recollected learning the last 
twenty-eight chapters of Isaiah in his boyhood, and 
very likely he did it in this way. 

"Then their father prayed for them hi words 
which his daughter has recorded. The whole 
household assembled by 8 for breakfast, and there 
followed at 8.30 family prayers, with a hymn, a 
reading and exposition of Holy Scripture, the whole 
being concluded by 9 o clock, when all dispersed to 
their several occupations." 

It was said that from the outset the members 
of that household were taught to get good and to 
do good, and one of them recalled a saying 
of her father one day, as she was going out into 
the village, and had asked, " Father, what can I do 
for you ? " " Do all the good you can, my child." 

The Rector had wide interests, and the daily 
post, with tidings of movements, missionary, ecclesi 
astical, social, educational, from all quarters, 
together with the visits of many eminent and 
eminently good men, kept the family circle in 
touch with the outer world and gave a wider 
horizon to its outlook. 



EARLY YEARS 7 

It must also be said that the views respecting 
amusements and social life generally, then pre 
valent among a great many religious persons in 
England, were strongly held at Watton. 

The lines were drawn then where few would 
draw them now, and young people were warned 
against pastimes, now thought to be good or 
neutral in their character, as being hurtful to 
souls, inconsistent with higher spiritual growth and 
fruitful service in the Lord s vineyard. At the 
same time the home life at Watton Rectory was 
bright and even merry ; diversions and recreations 
of a loftier character were encouraged which 
afforded real refreshment in the intervals of busy 
lives. Most of us to-day do not see eye to eye 
with them in these things, but we may well believe 
that such an attitude upon the part of many earnest 
Christian people, however it might tend to provoke 
a reaction in the succeeding generation, did more to 
raise the standard of true religion in the world in 
after days than would have been possible, had they 
been more lenient with themselves and with others. 

Young Edward Bickersteth was educated 
entirely at home until he went to Cambridge in 
1843. His tutor was the Rev. T. R. Birks, 1 a 
young Fellow of Trinity of brilliant attainments, 
who acted as his father s curate and subsequently 
married his elder sister. The Bishop wrote of him 
in after years, " I shall always esteem him as one of 
the most original and clear-sighted thinkers of the 
Church of England." To Professor Birks he owed 
his first love for Plato and Milton. 

1 Afterwards Knightbridge Professor of Moral Philosophy. 



8 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

As a boy he was very fond of out-of-door 
pursuits, having a great love for animals, and 
especially for horses. His sister writes : 

" Of sports, as they are now understood, 
Edward had but little in his boyhood, but of 
healthful play a great deal. A lady in his father s 
congregation gave him a magnificent Newfound 
land dog, which became one of the great treasures 
of the Kectory children, and Edward was seldom 
without him in recreation time. Boating on a 
small sheet of water in Mr. Smith s beautiful 
grounds, where also he enjoyed skating in winter, 
was another favourite amusement. He loved to 
chase the deer, of which there was a fine herd, 
from those parts of the park into which they had 
trespassed from their own domain." 

He was passionately fond of cricket and a bowler 
in one of the Trinity Elevens. He retained his inte 
rest in the game to the end of his life, and could 
never pass a cricket-field without stopping to look on. 

He frequently visited at the houses of his near 
relations at Norwich and Liverpool, at Sapcote and 
at Coppenhall. In 1841 the whole family went 
with their father to visit his parents at Kirkby 
Lonsdale, and whilst there young Edward came 
to know the exquisite scenery of the valley of the 
Lune and the lakes and the mountains of Cumber 
land and Westmoreland. They occupied a house 
known as Old Hall, which was placed at their dis 
posal by Mr. William Carus Wilson of Casterton 
Hall, a man widely known and beloved for his 
Christian zeal and good works, and a lifelong friend 
of the Bickersteth family. 

Some letters from his father during these years 



EARLY YEARS 9 

have been preserved, and they are full of the 
tenderest affection and the most outspoken 
counsels. He was urged "to seek those things 
which are above, and to aspire after the friendship 
only of those who loved their Saviour." He was 
warned not to spend too much time at chess, as 
the recreations he ought to follow were those 
which would keep him in strong health. 

It is only with the most reverent reserve that 
any may venture to draw aside the veil which 
hides the workings of the spiritual life even in the 
youngest child. Edward Bickersteth was the child 
of earnest prayers from his birth, and his youth had 
been carefully shielded from influences which might 
contaminate. His parents held strongly the truths 
which the Church teaches in her baptismal offices 
as to the Christian covenant, its blessings and its 
obligations ; but they belonged to a school of re 
ligious thought which looked anxiously for tokens 
that the soul had yielded its response to the love 
of its Saviour. They longed and prayed for indi 
cations that their child had apprehended that for 
which all the baptized are apprehended of Christ 
Jesus. And hence we find his father writing to 
him in 1838, " Oh, my dear child, I do long to see 
you heartily and wholly decided to serve God, the 
only happy life for you, and I know that He will 
help you, if you really ask Him." But before, in 
1836, in a letter to his son s godmother, Lady Lucy 
Whitmore, he wrote, "My dear boy gives me much 
comfort ; I trust that we shall all receive (I include 
yourself) a rich revenue for all the seed of prayer 
sown for him." 



10 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

How those prayers were answered it may be 
permitted to tell from his own recollections. Be 
tween fifty and sixty years after, he told a small 
group of his chaplains at Exeter, as they conferred 
together at the close of one of the Ember days, the 
story of the supreme crisis in his own life. They 
listened with mingled awe and emotion, as the 
Bishop spoke of the struggles which found their 
climax in the conscious surrender of himself into 
his Saviour s keeping, and of the peace which came 
to him thereupon. He had been reading a book 
which had greatly helped him, Krummacher s " The 
Prophet Elijah." It was on a Sunday afternoon 
when he was about fourteen. He told how he had 
sought his father the same evening, and made 
known the joyful tidings. Very soon afterwards 
he made choice of the ministry as his calling in life, 
to which no doubt his father had dedicated him 
long before. 

It has been shown that he shared the tastes of 
other healthy boys of his own age, and it would 
appear, too, that he was inclined to be a little 
masterful. As a corrective to this tendency, the 
companionship of a boy of his own age seemed to 
be desirable. Mention should be made of his devo 
tion to his mother, who bore meekly and bravely 
the affliction of serious deafness, whilst she did her 
part nobly as wife and mother in a large household. 

The sick room of his sister, Frances, also taught 
him lessons of patient suffering and Christian sub 
mission to the will of God. His little book, " Water 
from the Well Spring," consists of meditations upon 
passages of Holy Scripture, written for her. An 



EARLY YEARS 11 

account of her long illness and heroic endurance of 
pain is given in a very remarkable book, " Doing 
and Suffering," by one of her sisters. 

He entered Trinity, Cambridge, in the autumn 
of 1843. Some of his father s letters have been 
preserved, but these give no direct information as 
to the life of the young undergraduate. He rejoices 
for his son in the friendship of William Carus, a 
Fellow of Trinity, the biographer of Charles Simeon, 
and Professor Scholefield, both leading Evangelicals 
in the university at that time. 

Edward Bickersteth s years at Cambridge were 
characterized by diligence in work and irreproach 
able fidelity to the religious principles in which he 
had been nurtured, and which had become his own 
by deliberate choice. No marvel if he were kept 
unspotted from the world, if amidst the temptations 
to young men in their college days "he held his 
heavenward course serene." 

His cousin, the Rev. J. E. B. Mayor, Professor 
of Latin in the University, who was his contempo 
rary, has kindly contributed some reminiscences of 
their time at Cambridge. " E. H. B. as an under 
graduate attended Professor Scholefield s evening 
sermons at St. Michael s, and sometimes the meet 
ings held by William Carus, Dean of Trinity, in a 
room which he had built for the purpose, where 
some hundreds of undergraduates might be seen on 
Sunday evenings. 

Edward Bickersteth was intimate with many of 
the best Trinity men of his time. At a party which 
he gave just before leaving Cambridge he expressed 
his grateful thanks to H. R. Luard (afterwards 



12 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Registrary ), who had saved his life whilst swimming 
in the Cam, at a spot nearer to Granchester than 
the present bathing-shed. 

Many have been the changes in Cambridge since 
those days : the railway had not come, coals were 
brought up by barge from Lynn, and fires were lit 
with bundles of sedge bought from the bed-makers. 

Although the round of studies was very narrow, 
a striking proof of the tone and scholarship of the 
Trinity men of 1847 appears in the wonderful copy 
of verses written in Galliambics by Evans and 
Vansittart for the tercentenary of Trinity College. 

J. J. Blunt, W. H. Mill, and Corrie had 
influence in the pulpit there, and Melville was 
still occasionally heard. 

Leslie Ellis, Senior Wrangler and editor of 
Bacon, though almost a fossil bodily, was a great 
spiritual force as he lay at Trumpington. Cole 
ridge, Arnold, Julius Hare, Thirlwall, and S. R. 
Maitland, a strong Protestant and strongly opposed 
to Pusey and Newman, were largely read by 
thoughtful men, as was also F. D. Maurice. The 
chief men of science of the time, Stokes, Adams, 
Sedgwick, Cayley, were all earnest Christians." 

To these may be added a few recollections of 
Edward Bickersteth himself, which have been 
preserved by his nephew, the Rev. E. B. Birks, 
formerly Fellow of Trinity, and Rector of Kel- 
lington. 

" Among his college friends, besides his future 
brother-in-law, Joseph Fenn, were his fellow- 
students in classics, Brook Foss Westcott, Evans, 



EARLY YEARS 13 

Vansittart, and Scott. Fenn was in the year 
above him, graduating in 1846 ; Evans and Van 
sittart were the Seniors in his own year, Scott and 
Westcott in the year below him, and though he 
himself took a third class, he was the chosen 
associate of the highest classics of two successive 
years. 

"Another of his friends was Rob Roy Mac- 
gregor, the canoist and shoeblack s friend, known 
at college by the name of a then noted religious 
book, Allen s Decided Christian. Macgregor 
was a Wrangler. 

" Edward Bickersteth belonged to the Historical 
Debating Society, and on one occasion he proposed 
that Macaulay in his Essay on Bacon shews that 
he understands neither Bacon nor Plato. The 
late Lord Derby carried the somewhat tame 
amendment that Macaulay understood Bacon but 
not Plato. 

Although a conscientious and industrious 
worker, he was disappointed hi his class, being a 
Junior Optime and a third classman in classics, 
but his marked, and at that time unique, distinc 
tion lay in another direction. He obtained ttye 
Chancellor s Prize Poem for three consecutive 
years, the subjects set being "The Tower of 
London," " Caubul," and " Caesar s Invasion of 
Britain." He writes of these in a preface to his 
earliest volume of poems in 1849, "they have been 
reprinted without alteration except the closing 
stanzas, which the kindly banterings of divers 
private critics have led me to peruse and slightly 
change." 

Many years later, in a sermon preached in 
Exeter Cathedral on the Diamond Jubilee of 



14 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Queen Victoria, he recalled a scene of his Cam 
bridge life. 

" It was my privilege," he said, " as an under 
graduate of Trinity, Cambridge, to be one of 
those who laid down our gowns for her to tread 
on, as she walked with graceful mirth and words of 
thanks on her lips, the Prince Consort following in 
her steps from the Master s Lodge to inspect our 
College Chapel in the autumn gloom. She was 
pleased to say that she had never received a 
heartier welcome, and oh, how proud we all were 
to have her under what we called our roof for 
two nights." 

After taking his degree Edward Bickersteth 
began his special preparation for Holy Orders in the 
following year. And as with many whose ministry 
has been greatly blessed by God, when the time 
drew near the sense of responsibility pressed sorely 
upon him. Of no sphere of duty is the saying, 
"that fools rush in where angels fear to tread," 
more true than of the sacred ministry. That such 
was the case with him appears from a letter of rare 
tenderness and wise sympathy from his brother-in- 
law, the Rev. T. R. Birks, to whom he had un 
bosomed his grief. He had preserved this letter 
with evident care for the rest of his life. 

At length, on February 6, 1848, he was 
ordained deacon by Bishop Stanley of Norwich. 
On the following Sunday he preached his first 
sermon at Watton to a crowded congregation, 
from 1 Corinthians i. 30, " Who of God is made 
unto us wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and 
redemption." A few weeks later his father wrote, 



EARLY YEARS 15 

4 On Thursday the 24th, at Norwich, I married 
my dear and only son Edward to Rosa Bignold. 
I have great joy in hoping that the marriage will 
be full of blessing." Edward Bickersteth s wife 
was his cousin, the daughter of Mr., afterwards 
Sir Samuel, Bignold, at one time Mayor and 
subsequently M.P. for Norwich. They removed 
shortly afterwards to Banningham near Aylsham, 
in Norfolk, to the curacy and sole charge of which 
the young deacon had been licensed. The same 
year he was admitted to the priesthood. 



CHAPTER II 

1848-1873 

Banningham Parish work Hinton Martell Hampstead Recollec 
tions Bereavements Personal influence Organization Visit to 
America. 

" Give those that teach pure hearts and wise, 
Faith, hope and love all warmed by prayer, 
Themselves first training for the skies, 
They best will raise their people there." 

BP. J. ARMSTRONG. 

THE young curate and his newly wedded wife 
settled in at Banningham on March 11, 1848, as 
we gather from an address on "the close of a 
first ministerial year," which he printed in March, 
1849. It was the substance of a sermon on the 
words, "They watch for your souls as they that 
must give account." It gives an ideal of the 
ministry which he had set before himself from the 
beginning, an ideal which grew and strengthened 
throughout the half-century of his active career in 
the Church of God, as deacon, priest, and bishop, 
and which may be said to have haunted and 
thrilled him to the very end. 

A small manuscript book dated October, 1850, 
gives in detail his methods of pastoral work. It 
contains a list of the households in the parish, with 
the names of the heads of each, besides the 
name and age of every child in the family, with 
notes of individual cases. 

16 



HAMPSTEAD 17 

He divided the parish into four districts for 
ministerial visitation, to which four days in the 
week were devoted. By seeing from four to six 
families a day, each district would be entered 
every week, and the whole visited every month. 
Then there came lists of families in the districts 
to which he went from Tuesday till Friday in each 
consecutive week. It was not a work entirely 
novel to him, as in the flyleaf of the same book 
there occur a few notes of visits amongst the poor 
at Watton as far back as 1844. 

The sermon to which reference has been made 
strikes the note of a love to souls which all who 
were ever thrown with him, felt to be deep and 
intense. In accordance with the Evangelical preach 
ing of those days, he addressed himself to three 
classes of souls, those who were dead, those who 
were awaking, and those who were living. The 
dead who might be respectable and moral out 
wardly, were bidden to remember the warnings of 
God s Word. " To be carnally minded is death : " 
not merely to act carnally, but to be carnally 
minded. The awaking were bidden not to 
stay in all the plain, not to look behind, but 
with purpose of heart, to cleave unto the Lord. 
The living were exhorted to be "separate from 
the world, to walk closely with God, to be self- 
denying, to be prayerful and to be united." 

He had formed a prayer union ; the names 
of its members are given in the little book, as are 
also those of the communicants at the end of his 
time at Banningham, thirty-five in all, twelve of 
whom had begun to attend during his ministry. 



18 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

He also gives a register of burials, some forty of 
which had taken place during the three years and 
a half of his residence in the parish, which certainly 
betokens a very heavy death-rate and unsanitary 
conditions generally. The number of baptisms 
was thirty-six, nearly equalling the rate of deaths. 

Not many letters descriptive of those years 
have come down. His father writes from 
Banningham in September, 1848 : 

"We had a very happy Sunday yesterday. 
The four parents and their two children met, and 
we had the Lord s Supper in Banningham Church 
with about twenty-five communicants. I preached 
in the afternoon for the C.M.S., and in the evening 
at Felmingham for the Jews, and go with Edward, 
please God, to Cromer to-night and to Yarmouth 
to-morrow. The most delightful thing to me was 
to hear my dear son preach a very faithful sermon 
on Luke xii. 32, and to be cheered by the hope 
that the Lord will be gracious to him, as He has 
been to his father, in blessing him to promote His 
holy and happy Kingdom." 

An extract from another letter of his father s 
in the following year, shows how the requirement 
for greater elasticity in the Church s services had 
begun to be felt even in those days. It is of 
interest, too, to note the way in which his pre 
decessor but one as Bishop of Exeter, Henry 
Philpotts, a doughty champion of Church Order, 
is mentioned. 

"I do not think even the Bishop of Exeter 
would quarrel with you for using the Litany alone 
in Lent and giving a short sermon after it, though 



HAMPSTEAD 19 

I suppose nothing is fully canonical but the whole 
service, inexpedient as it would be in a country 
village." 

Few details of the home life at Banningham 
have been preserved. Edward Bickersteth had 
in his young wife a true help-meet in eveiy 
department of his life and labours, a personality 
of rare loveliness and sweetness, one who shared 
to the full his ideals and aspirations. Their two 
eldest children were born at Banningham, the 
younger of whom, Edward, became the devoted 
missionary Bishop of the English Church in South 
Tokio. 

In May, 1849, Edward Bickersteth went with 
his father to the jubilee of the Church Missionary 
Society in London, where a hymn which he had 
written, " O Brothers, lift your voices," was sung. 
He lived to hear it at the centenary of the Society 
in 1899, as Bishop of Exeter. 

In March, 1850, he sustained the loss of his 
honoured father, towards whom his heart went 
forth in the tenderest affection. He was compelled 
to leave Banningham in the autumn of 1851, 
through weakness of health, and removed to 
Tunbridge Wells where he served as curate of 
Christ Church for three months. This was his 
first experience of preaching regularly to an 
educated congregation, and his sermons made a 
great impression. 

The following year brought him the nomination 
to the Rectory of Hinton Martell, near Wimborne, 
in Dorset, by Lord Ashley, the friend of his 
father, and afterwards Earl of Shaftesbury. There 



20 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

he carried on a devoted and diligent pastorate 
during the next three years. 

A prospectus or manifesto issued at the 
beginning of the year 1854 gives as his watch 
word : " He that is faithful in that which is least, 
is faithful also in much, and he that is unjust 
in that which is least is unjust also in much " 
(St. Luke xvi. 16). "Ye ought to say, If the 
Lord will, we shall live, and do this or that." 
Public baptisms were to be administered on the 
first Sunday in each month. Parents were re 
quested to inform their minister, a few days 
before a baptism, of the names of the God 
parents. It was also particularly requested that 
any persons coming to the Lord s Table for 
the first time, or who had been absent twice, 
except from illness, would see, or write to their 
minister before they came. 

Weekly lectures were held on Wednesday 
evenings in the schoolroom, the first in each 
month being devoted to a missionary subject, and 
there was a prayer meeting at the Rectory on 
Saturday evenings. During the winter months, 
an adults night school and reading-room were 
opened on three evenings in the week. The list 
of books in the library is given ; it consisted 
largely of books which appealed for the most part 
to persons of thoughtful and serious minds. 

He used to tell an amusing story of an old 
parishioner at Hinton Martell. She was to come 
to the Rectory for soup on alternate Fridays and 
to send next Friday, and every other Friday. 
She came on both Fridays and said, " Sir, I 



HAMPSTEAD 21 

thought you told me to come next Friday and 
every other Friday," meaning all the others. 
His eldest daughter l writes 

" Among the recollections of my father are his 
Bible stories on Sunday evenings to my brother 
and myself, when we could not have been more 
than four and five years old. He made the stories 
live to us, with his vivid word painting and with 
the help of two sets of beautiful pictures. 

" His intense interest in Missionary work 
always had the effect of making it very real to us. 
Before I was six years old, I remember going with 
him in his visits to the sick and poor and how he 
was welcomed by them." 

In 1852 his invalid sister, Frances Bickersteth, 
whom he tenderly loved entered into rest. He 
wrote to the sister who had nursed her for years 

" Look not at the things which are seen the 
transient and temporal but at the enduring and 
eternal. Do this early for your own sake, for our 
precious mother s sake, and above all for our 
Saviour s sake, who is, perhaps, never so much 
honoured as when His people are joyful in tribula 
tion, and sorrow with a chastened but hopeful joy, 
even as the rainbow clouds weep and brighten at 



once." 



In a letter from Hinton Martell the following 
year, the writer says 

" This is a sphere in which the powers God 
has given him are by no means buried. I am 
often quite astonished at the influence which he 

1 Mrs. F. M. Rundall. 



22 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

has gained in the neighbourhood. The affection 
of the people is a great joy and strength." 

In the spring of 1855, he was asked to take 
temporary duty at Christ Church, Hampstead, 
which had just been given up by the Rev. the 
Hon. J. T. Pelham, afterward Bishop of Norwich, 
with a view to his appointment to the living. The 
offer was made to him by the Trustees on June 
llth, and a few days later he writes, " With a 
crushing sense of responsibility, I have accepted 
the living." Early in August he brought his 
family to the large old-fashioned house in Cannon 
Place, which was to be their home for the next 
thirty years. From the garden in front of his 
study window, there was a superb view over 
London in fine weather to the Surrey Hills. To 
the right, above a screen of trees, rose the graceful 
spire of the church which was a landmark for 
many miles around. His garden was a perpetual 
source of pleasure to him. He planted apple trees 
there and at each of his other homes, and was very 
proud of his rhododendron, supposed to be the 
largest single root in England. He used to say 
that he had written most of his books " sitting 
under the vine and fig tree of his own planting." 

His eldest daughter thus continues her recollec 
tions of their life at Hampstead. 

" After my brother grew old enough to go to 
school, our father read and talked about one of the 
Proverbs of Solomon every morning after breakfast 
for a few minutes, and then walked nearly as far as 
the school with the boy. He also offered him a prize 




CHRIST CHURCH, HAMPSTEAD : WITH VICARAGE, SHOWING STUDY. 



HAMPSTEAD 23 

for each chapter of the book of Proverbs he could 
say by heart, and a larger prize when he should be 
able to repeat the whole book. 

"The happy summer holidays live in our 
memory. He enjoyed all the pleasure so keenly ; 
and we loved having him with us most of the day, 
since, at home so busy was his life, that we often 
saw but little of him from day to day. 

" Five evenings in the week for many years, he 
read aloud poetry to us for three quarters of an 
hour after seven o clock. In this way we knew 
much of Shakespeare, Milton, Southey, Words 
worth, Longfellow, Tennyson, also parts of Byron, 
Shelley, Keats, and Moore, good translations of 
Homer, and portions of many other poets. 

" He made a rule of reading aloud the leading 
articles of the Times after lunch, and discussing the 
men and events of the day. Then, too, his Bible 
Classes were a weekly interest. First of course we 
belonged to the children s, and after Confirmation 
to the adult s class, in both of which we had 
questions set us. We were expected to give in 
carefully prepared answers, and these were returned 
to us the next week, with pencilled criticisms at 
the end. 

"He drew many interesting people into our 
home, both English and American ; well-known 
clergymen who came to stay or to preach ; friends 
such as John Macgregor, Bishop Thorold and 
Bishop French, beside others who loved his books, 
and wanted to meet the author. All alike were 
much attracted by his vivid personality and my 
mother s sweetness and grace. 

"He could be stern upon occasion, but what 
struck us, even as children, was his saintliness, and 
his intensely bright and sunny nature. He often 
said that he had three distinct enjoyments of most 
pleasures ; anticipation, fruition, retrospect ; and he 



24 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

constantly quoted the sayings Always sit on the 
sunny side of the hill, and Never cross a bridge 
till you come to it. 

" He was a great traveller, and took my brother 
with him to Norway and America ; and when we 
were quite young, my brother and four of us went 
to Switzerland with him. 

"After I married and went out to India, he 
wrote to me every week, until within two years 
of his death, when through increasing weakness the 
letters became shorter, and then were too great 
a burden for his waning strength. 

" His grandchildren were a very great pleasure 
to him, and when my children had to be sent home 
from India, he and my kind stepmother gave them 
the happiest of homes for many years in the Palace 
at Exeter." 

The Rev. E. B. Birks also contributes recollec 
tions of the early home life at Hinton Martell and 
Hampstead, which throw some side lights upon the 
portraiture of it which has just been given. 

" My own first recollections of my uncle are as 
Rector of Hinton Martell, where I stayed with 
him, with my father and mother. A little book 
which he brought out then, " Sabbath evenings at 
home," was the delight of my childhood. It was 
in the form of dialogues between father and 
children, showing how much positively is told 
us of that other better world. He went with his 
Churchwarden, Mr. Tatham, and my father to 
Switzerland in 1856, the year of my mother s 
death. My next recollections of him which are 
prominent, are of his coming to Kelshall to give us 
an account of what he had seen in Ireland of the 
Irish revival. 

" It was in 1862 that I came under his roof to 



HAMPSTEAD 25 

attend Highgate School with Edward. Daily at 
breakfast he read one of the Proverbs of Solomon, 
and I think Trench on English Proverbs. Then 
he started out with us and went part of the way to 
school. The educative value of that daily walk 
with him was not small. Wet or fine, if I 
remember rightly, he came with us. In winter 
it would be across the Vale of Health and by the 
high - road ; in summer by the fields between 
Traitor s Hill and Lord Mansfield s Park ; and he 
taught us to delight in the beauty of the woods. 
He would tell us also of his own University life. 

"That summer there was an epidemic at the 
school, and we were for a bit in quarantine at the 
Vicarage, taught by him ; I remember his setting 
us to put the beginning of the ^Eneid into English 
verse and correcting my " 1 sing of arms and of 
a man," to " Arms and a man I sing," and also his 
giving us the exhortation in the Baptismal Service 
to turn into Latin prose. 

"In 1863, at the beginning of which year my 
sister died, he prepared me for Confirmation. I 
shall never forget the first instruction on Him 
with whom we have to do. The same year we 
went a party of five or six, including uncle and 
aunt, to Scotland, the only tour I ever took with 
him. 

" In my time with him at Hampstead he was 
beginning to plan the Hymnal Companion and 
to write the poem. The description of the angel s 
wings in the latter, was suggested by some lovely 
drawings which Mrs. Drummond, one of his 
parishioners, had made from the birds of paradise 
in the British Museum." 

The home life during the years between 1855 
and 1873 was interspersed with the births of 
children and visits from the angel of death. His 



26 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

aged mother, who lived with him, was called to her 
rest in the autumn of 1859, after a brief illness. 
Four years later, on the death of his babe, he 
wrote 

" How shall I write and tell you of our deep 
sorrow ! The Lord has taken from us our sweet 
blossom Eva Mabel. He called back to His home 
of light the precious sunbeam which has gladdened 
our pilgrim home for eight short months. She was 
a perfect ideal of infant gladness. The Lord had 
need of her above, and we had need of the heart- 
deep teaching which nothing but this would give. 
Pray for us that we may listen to every accent 
of the still small voice." 

Another heavy sorrow befell him in 1872, when 
his third daughter, Alice Frances, a girl of exquisite 
gifts and rare beauty of character, passed away in 
her nineteenth year, after a prolonged decline. 
The account which he wrote of her death, entitled 
"The Master s Home Call," had a circulation of 
many thousands of copies. But the deepest waters 
he had ever known were yet to be traversed, for in 
August, 1873, his devotedly loved wife was taken 
from him, and he left desolate with a large young 
family. But he himself was comforted of God, 
with the same comfort which he had been the 
means for so many years of conveying to others. 

The change in 1855 from the cure of a few 
hundred souls at Hinton Martell to three thousand 
at Hampstead was very great, but he entered upon 
his new work with zeal and enthusiasm. He 
adopted all the ways then usual for ministering 
to the needs of his people, and devised such means 



HAMPSTEAD 27 

as a loving ingenuity might suggest. Nor did a 
pastor ever reap a richer harvest in the warm 
affection of his flock. Services, classes, meetings 
of all kinds were held, and movements set on foot 
for Foreign Missions, Missions to the Jews, the 
Irish Church Missions, the British and Foreign 
Bible Society, the Evangelical Alliance, and the 
Church Pastoral Aid Society. Soon after his 
appointment he began open-air preaching on the 
Heath, which he carried on so far as his voice 
would permit. A friend 1 of those years writes : 

"I remember perfectly well his coming to 
Hampstead. Christ Church had only been built 
some three or four years. He continued the Bible 
classes for girls of the upper classes, which Mr., 
afterwards Bishop, Pelham had begun. About 
that time Mr. Pennefather, then of Barnet, began 
the Barnet Conferences, from which the Mildmay 
and subsequent conferences were developed ; Mr. 
Bickersteth organized a similar conference which 
was held in the lecture-room, I think about 1861. 
This room of corrugated iron was built from a 
legacy left him by his wife s mother. There was a 
half-hour s prayer meeting on Saturday mornings 
at a private house, when matters private and 
parochial were remembered, and requests for 
prayer invited. 

" My chief recollection of Mr. Bickersteth was 
of his great faithfulness as a friend and parish 
priest. After my father s death in 1859 he used 
to visit my mother almost once a week, and she 
greatly prized these visits. The early part of his 
incumbency was marked by the healing of a bitter 
feud there had been in the congregation about the 

1 Miss Maclnnes. 



28 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

east window of the church, which had been given 
by one of the members. To the five figures in the 
window some of the congregation objected, and 
after much painful discussion the stained glass was 
taken out and the window left blank, but the 
breach was not healed, as some who had formerly 
been friends were not on speaking terms. Mr. 
Pelham did all he could to bring them together, 
but it was given to Mr. Bickersteth to put the 
final touch of reconciliation. There was a great 
sense of a well-organized parochial work, and of 
this he was the mainspring." 

He was a welcomed visitor in the homes of his 
flock, both rich and poor, and would go at once to 
those in trouble, "visiting the widow and the 
fatherless in their affliction." Amongst those to 
whom he ministered was Mrs. Tennyson, the 
mother of the Poet Laureate. His own account 
of her, written many years later, after the death of 
her son, is given in a note below. 1 

1 To the Editor of the " Times" 

SIR, On the day of the funeral of our great poet your readers may 
be glad of some memories which, for me, cling to the funeral day of his 
mother. She spent the last years of her life at Hampstead, and it was 
my privilege from time to time to visit her as her pastor. She died 
there, and her son Alfred, though he came to the house, would not see 
her tabernacle after her spirit had fled, saying to me, ( e My last 
thoughts of my mother shall be as I saw her two or three weeks ago 
sitting in that chair : that look is printed in my soul for ever." I con 
ducted the funeral service at Highgate cemetery, and on our return 
the family insisted on my spending the afternoon with them, and when 
one present said, <( We must not look for any other resurrection ; her 
spirit has returned to God who gave it, that is the true resurrection," 
Alfred Tennyson replied, (C I do not think that is the teaching of the 
Scripture we heard read this morning in the chapel before we went to 
her grave." His faith was anchored on the word of God. 

As we sat round the table, thoughts awakened thoughts, and 
reminiscence called forth reminiscence of their sainted mother. The 



HAMPSTEAD 29 

He also " rejoiced with them that do rejoice," 
for when a newly married couple from his congre 
gation came home after their wedding-tour, it was 
his custom to take family prayer for them on the 
evening of their return. His wedding-present was 
generally a family Bible. He was prompt in 
calling upon those who had recently come to the 
neighbourhood, and bidding them welcome as their 
parish clergyman. 

He had a genius for bringing people together 
and inspiring them with the desire to work in 
different ways. The churchwardens and sidesmen 
with other leading members of his congregation 
rallied to his support, not alone in matters which 
concerned the church with its services and the 
Parish, but in many outside objects, such as 
hospitals, refuges, asylums, dispensaries, besides 
those which have been already mentioned. So 
large was his band of district visitors that a 
number of them were led to offer themselves to 
work in large overcrowded districts near by, such 
as Gospel Oak. The Sunday Schools were carried 
on with conspicuous success by a band of able 
and devoted superintendents and teachers. The 
charm of his personality made itself felt amongst 
persons of high intellectual culture in the midst 

poet s heart most of all overflowed with admiration and affection. 
And when at length I rose to leave them, he came alone with me to 
the hall and said, " Mr. Bickersteth, I hope you will not think I 
have spoken in exaggerated terms of my beloved mother ; hut indeed 
she was the beautifullest thing God Almighty ever . did make." I 
could only wring his hand and say farewell. 

E. H. EXON. 
THE PALACE, EXETER, 
October 10, 1892. 




30 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of whom "he approved himself as the Minister 
of Christ," drawing their minds to higher things. 

In cottage and mansion alike, his presence was 
in some measure as " the shadow of Peter passing 
by," which shed a holy influence about it. His 
radiant face and gentle, cheery words won him an 
entrance everywhere, for he had much of the 
power which comes from the calm of a close walk 
with God. 

The outstanding events in his life at Hamp- 
stead during these years were his " Commentary 
on the New Testament," the writing of his poem, 
" Yesterday, To-day and Forever," and the prepa 
ration of " The Hymnal Companion." In the year 
1870, after the Hymn-book had gone to the Press, 
he went with his eldest son to America, where his 
poem had been very widely read, and his greeting 
on their side of the Atlantic was such as only 
Americans know how to give. His welcome was 
an ovation, and he had delightful intercourse with 
the poet Longfellow, Dr. Ray Palmer and other 
men of note in literary circles. But what filled him 
with joy and thankfulness were the numerous 
testimonies that his poem had been blessed of 
God to the consolation of many souls, as well as 
to the winning of not a few to the faith of Christ. 
What might have been too much for many a good 
man only deepened his humility, whilst it rejoiced 
his heart. 



CHAPTER III 

1873-1885 

Later yeai-s at Hampstead His eldest son goes to India Letters 
Tour to India and Palestine Attendance at Church Congresses 
Missions Clerical Friends in Council 

" Christian saw the Picture of a very grave Person hang up against 
the wall ; and this was the fashion of it. It had eyes lifted up to 
Heaven, the best of Books in his hand, the Law of Truth was 
written upon his lips, the World was behind his hack. It stood as if 
it pleaded with men, and a Crown of Gold did hang over his head." 
Pilgrim s Progress. 

* Those fallen leaves which keep their green 
The noble letters of the dead." In Memoriam. 

THE Vicar of Christ Church, Hampstead, had for 
some years been called upon to undertake a great 
deal of work outside his parish. He took part in 
parochial missions, addressed devotional gatherings 
of the clergy, conducted Quiet Days, read papers at 
Church Congresses, served on committees and sub 
committees at the C.M.S. and other societies. His 
own bishop often summoned him with other leading 
clergy in the diocese to conferences on diocesan 
questions. 

He was the first to introduce Retreats and Quiet 
Days amongst the clergy and laity of his own school 
of thought. Although a convinced Evangelical 
throughout his career, his sympathies went out to 
earnest and devoted men of other views. He 

31 



32 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

agreed to differ on relatively minor points with 
those who did not see eye to eye with himself, but 
with whom he felt at one on the fundamental 
truths of the faith. No one ever echoed more 
heartily St. Paul s words, " Grace be with all them 
that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity." He 
was wider, too, than many of his Evangelical 
brethren in the Church of England in his views as 
to the oneness of all Christian people, and as to the 
forms in which this unity might be expressed. 
Thus he held to the last his father s attitude 
towards the Evangelical Alliance, and he was never 
ashamed of his opinions nor did he shrink from 
uttering them, albeit with meekness, when the 
occasion seemed to require it. His was the 
staunch Protestantism which maintained that 
Missions should be sent to Roman Catholics in 
Ireland and elsewhere. He held it to be the 
duty of those who had the fuller and purer light 
of the Reformation to diffuse it amongst those 
that had it not. And the Roman Catholics them 
selves would own that herein he was consistent 
and that he acted on the very principles which 
determine their own work everywhere. They 
respected him for it. He could not admit that, 
whilst they were constantly raiding our flocks, it 
was anything but right to make reprisals. 

In February 1876 he married his cousin, Ellen 
Susanna, daughter of Mr. Robert Bickersteth of 
Liverpool, who became the devoted companion 
and helper of his remaining years. 

In the year 1877, his eldest son, who was a 
Fellow of Pembroke, Cambridge, went out to 



HAMPSTEAD 33 

India as the founder and first head of the Cam 
bridge Mission to Delhi. And never did father 
give up a more deeply loved son to God s work. 
During the four years of his residence in India, 
Edward Bickersteth received weekly letters from 
his father, which he carefully preserved. These 
letters reveal the inmost soul of the writer, and 
the difficulty has been to select where wealth of 
material exists in such profusion. Utterances of 
trust in God, of fervent supplication for his son 
and the work in which he was engaged, fatherly 
advice and requests for counsel on his own behalf, 
constantly recur, and must be taken for granted 
although not expressed in the extracts from the 
letters of those years. 

He writes, November 21, 1877 

" The Rev. Henry Wright s stirring appeal for 
St. Andrew s Day makes me resolve to double my 
contribution on that day for this year of need, 
and I am glad it should be the first year that my 
beloved son is numbered with the blessed Mis 
sionary band of Evangelists. French is to be the 
preacher at St. Dunstans. I rejoice in his being 
your Bishop. I feel sure he will prove an elder 
brother to you. 

" I am asked to address 100 clergy in Leeds at 
their Quiet Day in Ember Week." 

" December 2. 

" I can now, as I told my flock last Sunday, 
testify that there is joy, even a holy hilarity, in 
acts of self-denial for iChrist s sake. * God loveth 
a cheerful giver. 

"December 14. 

" The Record has singled me out as one that 
patronized Retreats. I have written to them : 

D 



34 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Protestant and Evangelical Retreats I heartily 
advocate ; Romanizing Retreats I heartily depre 
cate. I dislike all newspaper correspondence 
exceedingly, but it was an occasion for urging 
our true-hearted Evangelical leaders and fathers- 
in-God, to put themselves at the head of this 
Retreat movement which no one can stop, for 
it supplies a felt need." 

December 21. 

" Bishop French and Bishop Titcombe were 
consecrated to-day in Westminster Abbey. Is it 
not a gracious providence that these Bishops for 
India should be set apart on St. Thomas Day? 
Oh, that they may be apostles in the power of 
Christ ! " 

" December 25. 

" I am greatly feasting on Baldwin Brown s 
The Higher Life. It is really one of those first- 
rate books which live in you, and in which you 
live. You say W. talks of converts being allowed 
to work on Sunday to keep them out of idleness. 
Surely this must have been foreseen when God gave 
the Fourth Commandment, or when God gave 
again to man what he had given in Eden. I do 
feel so thankful for what you say, that it is the 
saintliness of his servants which God especially 
uses, even more than the power of argument, 
needful as this is. 

" January 11, 1878. 

" Thank God, solitude and service alike draw 
us to the Master. He is our life." 

Of preaching away, he says, " I greatly prefer 
preaching six sermons to one flock, to preaching 
one in six different churches, for after awhile you 
get en rapport with your hearers." 



HAMPSTEAD 35 



thoughjie says he 



most noble s monnhis chi P? a 



that t which hasa puff 

for nearly forty years." to me 



Preach , 



weight to the 
pumshment. Aftertwenty 

1 Afterwards Bishop of Winchest 



36 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

prayer, I must solemnly believe in eternal punish 
ment, but in what it consists is the question." . . . 
"Tokens of success humble one even more than 
disappointments." 

" March 8. 

" I was asked to address clergy at Windsor ; 
it would be unfortunate if Evangelical clergy do 
not take up this important work. I was helped 
to speak to their hearts. Amongst my auditors 
for the first address was Canon Carter of Clewer, 
who had come with great difficulty, having to 
preach at a distance.* He came into the vestry 
and was most cordial. You remember my old 
favourite simile that if you wish to convey an 
electric shock to another through yourself, you 
must first take hold of the electric bar with one 
hand, and of your brother with the other." 

"AprUS. 

" I spoke to about seventy clergy at Liverpool 
in the afternoon for nearly an hour, on * the love 
of Christ as the motive power for evangelistic 
and pastoral work. I do think there was a real 
power of the Blessed Spirit resting upon us. Mr. 
Bardsley 1 told me he saw some he should have 
thought rather hard and rigid, quite moved even 
to tears. May God water the seed sown." 

"May 17. 

" I rejoice to hear of Mr. Hunter being sent to 
you by the S.P.G. from Calcutta, while the C.M.S. 
take some of his work there. A blessed interchange 
between the two orders as French calls the 
C.M.S. and S.P.G. I do hope that Mr. Hunter 
will be to you the Epaphroditus you so sorely need 
at this time." 

1 Afterwards Bishop of Carlisle. 



HAMPSTEAD 37 

June 6. 

" The Bishop designate of Lichfield, 1 asked me 
to give one of the addresses on his last Quiet Day 
with his own flock, and which he resolved to have 
to-morrow. I will take with them my subject of 
last Sunday. * I will not leave you comfortless. 
I think Whit Sunday must be the most precious 
of all festivals to a Missionary." 

On August 3, he writes from Switzerland : 
" It was a most lovely day coming across the 
Brunig Pass. It was so strange last night ; there 
is a large party of Americans here, and I had an 
earnest request from them that I should read aloud 
to them in the salon, selected passages from my 
poem. As I found it would give them real 
satisfaction, I consented. They had most of them 
read the book in America, and were strangely 
pleased to meet the writer." 

" Leukerbad, August 18. 

" Since I last wrote to you that hurried note 
from Miirren, M. and I travelled nearly 2000 
miles to Liverpool and back; but it was worth, 
indeed, amply worth all, for you know how such 
hours of meeting round a beloved parent s a grave 
knit more closely than ever the hearts of loving 
brothers and sisters, and they did all feel it a 
special proof of love, our coming so far. We 
heard so much of the holy peace of our mother s 
last days, that it was a great comfort ; and 
for her we do indeed feel that the Great and 
Good Shepherd has taken His honoured and 
faithful servant, now wearied out with her long 
pilgrimage, to His bosom of rest." 

1 Dr. Maclagan, afterwards Archbishop of York. 

2 Mrs. Bickersteth of Castertou Hall. 



38 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

" September 6. 

"About the Evangelical view of the Lord s 
Supper, though of course some few hold unworthy 
views, I have been so accustomed from my child 
hood to hear my blessed father speak of it as the 
loftiest privilege of holding tryst with Christ, in 
the spirit of Eph. iii. 14-17, Rev. iii. 20, that I 
confess all distinctively High Church views have 
seemed to me poor and thin in comparison. But 
I doubt not, we have all to learn each from the 
other." 

Writing of his recent appointment as Rural 
Dean of Highgate he says 

" September 13. 

" It is not a post I should have coveted, but 
it is a position of influence, for the Bishop really 
tries to work his diocese through his 25 Rural 
Deans. My idea is to make a great effort to 
persuade all the Clergy of the Deanery to meet 
on Quiet Days here, at least once in the year. 

" October 11. 

" We have had our Retreat. A most delightful 
three days. Carpenter 1 was wonderfully helped. 
So clear, so searching, so tenderly eloquent." 

About the Church Congress he says 

" It often amazes and confounds me, that I 
should be apparently called to speak to others, and 
so I fear, lest my self-assertion should have led them 
to form erroneous estimates of the brother they 
invite to address them. Only may the good Lord 
spare the hand that dares to touch His holy ark ; 
only may He bless the words spoken in feebleness, 
and clothe them with the might of His Spirit. 

" I was helped at Sheffield. The meeting was 

1 The Rev. W. B. Carpenter, afterwards Bishop of Ripou. 



HAMPSTEAD 39 

solemn even to holy awe. The good Archbishop 
grasped my hand twice as 1 retired from speaking, 
and thanked me with warm emphasis." " I have 
to prepare twelve addresses for the Clifton Quiet 
Days." 

" November 1. 

" I fear you have been working too hard ; that 
is, remember, living on capital ; now if so, you 
must repay the loan in shape of extra exercise and 
rest, and as a rule, rigidly live within your income 
of strength and living energy. You have as a wise 
steward (D.V.), to lay out your whole life for the 
best of Masters in the noblest of fields." 

" December 6. 

"The Bishop of London wrote last night, 
asking me to undertake so far as I could, dear 
Maclagan s work among the candidates for Priest s 
Orders at his next ordination, and I suppose his 
future ones. It is an anxious responsibility, and 
as I have written to him I shall be with him in 
weakness and fear, and in much trembling, for 1 
think, never is man s mind more ductile, and 
susceptible of lasting impression, than at ordina 
tion." 

"January 10, 1879. 

" I am reading with deep interest Thomas 
Erskine s. letters, of Linlathen, but he is a confirmed 
universalist, and I am sure does not give so full 
weight to the mass of Scripture on the other side, 
and I fear the book will do harm as well as good." 

On January 18, 1879, he writes as follows to 
one of his sons, 1 at that time in a merchant s 
office : 

" There is a nobility in merchandise, as we read 
of Tyre, the Crowning City, whose merchants are 

1 The Rev. H. V. Bickersteth, Rector of Falmer. 



40 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

princes, and whose traffickers are the honourable of 
the Earth (Isaiah xxiii. 8.) And this, however, 
is crowned with new glory when all the tribute is 
laid at Christ s feet. 

" Integrity and intelligence seem the two 
moral foundation-stones of success. And the racy 
proverb is some help, * Drive your work and do not 
let your work drive you. 

To his son at Delhi : 

"February 14, 1879. 

"We had a most blessed Quiet Day last 
Thursday at St. Paul s. A most excellent, touch 
ing, heart-searching address from our Bishop, 
chiefly on the dangers which beset all ministerial 
work, his own as a Bishop, and ours as Parish 
Priests. I do not know when I have felt Christ 
so near, or God s eye so clearly resting on one s 
life and work. Then the quiet for prayer, with 
so many hundreds of clergy praying round, was 
very impressive Dear Bishop Thorold s words 
in the afternoon, on " Thy will be done (Thy will 
by us, in our works : Thy will in us, as holiness : 
Thy will for us, as unity) were very powerful, 
more finished and ornate, and balanced, but much 
less pathetic than our Bishop s. Still the whole was 
most profitable, most subduing, most humbling. 
I did feel thankful again and again, that it sprang 
first from your suggestion to me and Wilkinson. 1 

" March 14. 

" I enjoyed Birks last book, " Supernatural 
Revelation." God has certainly given him a mar 
vellous power of unravelling sophisms. This he 
always could do most unsparingly, but I think this 
volume reveals a chastened maturity of Christian 

1 Afterwards Bishop of St. Andrews. 



HAMPSTEAD 41 

judgment, befitting one whose warfare is drawing 
to its close. 

" I have begun Wilberforce on the Incarnation, 
and I am sure I shall be deeply interested in it, 
though I do not expect to find a response in myself 
to all his statements. But it is indispensable to 
walk all round the mountain of truth, and not to 
be content with one aspect only nay, we must 
climb as high as we can, on every pathway of access. 
There will ever be snowy summits piercing the 
golden sky far above us. When we are caught 
up to meet the Lord in the air, we shall be able to 
embrace, I suppose in one wide panorama, all those 
upland slopes and peaks to which we look up now, 
but even then there will be, and must be, to limited 
intelligences, an immeasurable * beyond. 

" March 21. 

" I was delighted to get Bishop Lightfoot s 
letter, and that he should be so firmly * resolved to 
take the Delhi Mission with him to Durham is 
such a great mercy." 

" May 16. 

" We are to have our first Ruridecanal Meeting 
on June 4th. The morning will be devotional, and 
I address them on The Pastor in his Study and 
among his Flock. The subjects in the afternoon 
will be Church Defence, and Church Missions. I 
wish I could have you by my side on such a day. 
But it is still a greater privilege to have you in the 
high places of the field of battle. I am delighted 
with Godet s Biblical Studies, and sent him my 
poem the other day to Neuchatel, as so many of 
our thoughts are on the same theme." 

After writing of the Gospel of the Resurrection 
which he had been reading again, he asks 



42 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

" June 13. 

"Did I tell you that Dr. Vaughan l said to me that 
Westcott was staying with him at the time of Light- 
foot s consecration ; and Vaughan said to Westcott, 
* Now, friend, do tell what is the difference betwixt 
you and Lightfoot ? and Westcott answered, Well, 
Lightfoot is never content till he has made a subject 
definite, and I can never be content till I have 
made it indefinite. Dr. Vaughan said to me that 
he thought it was very true, and that both cha 
racteristics were of intrinsic value, for all truths 
needed definition for practical application, and yet 
as touching on the eternal they were beyond us to 
define ; and this we must recognise, if we would 
know the reality of things. All these thoughts 
seemed to me worthy of the men. 

" We have had a heavy loss to the Church in 
Miss Havergal s death. It was only two or three 
months ago that she stopped me in Elm Row with 
such a warm and hearty greeting, and now she has 
proved her own words 

" I could not do without Thee, 

For years are fleeting fast, 
And soon in solemn loneness 

The river must be pass d ; 
But Thou wilt never leave me, 

And though the waves roll high, 
I know Thou wilt be near me, 

And whisper, " It is I." 

"She was only forty-two, and I believe she 
died repeating 

" Jesus I will trust Thee, trust Thee with my soul. " 

"June 26. 

"I have arranged with Rivingtons to publish 
my poem, < Yesterday, To-day and For Ever, for 
Is. and 2s. 6d, in the same form as their Christian 

1 Afterwards Dean of Llandaff. 



HAMPSTEAD 43 

Year, though they are not to give me any profits 
till 10,000 of the Is. and 3,000 of the 2s. 6d. are 
sold, which N. thinks will be when we are in our 
graves. But if it brings the truth before many 
hearts of the middle class, and if God bless it to 
any, it will be an overflowing recompense. 

"Julyl. 

" How I wish the damnatory clauses could be 
excised (i.e. from the Athanasian creed) it would 
be a grand song beginning, We worship one God 
in Trinity. But if this cannot be done, I would, 
as the Irish Church has done, simply leave it in 
the Prayer Book as a standard of the true faith, 
expunging the rubric for its use in the congregation." 

"July 25. 

" I saw Mr. Speechley and Mr. Ridley (Bishops 
elect) yesterday. I do trust that they and dear 
W. W. How and Dr. Barclay will have a rich 
blessing to-day. What a picture of the wide- 
stretching English Church ! Their consecration is 
to Travancore, Columbia, Jerusalem, and East 
London. What an unspeakable mercy it is to be 
a member of this grand old Church, the noblest 
witness for Christ in the world ! " 

" Penmaenmawr, August 28. 

" Dean Howson wrote yesterday again, begging 
me to go with him and Canon Tristram and Dean 
Fremantle to Palestine next January, but I do not 
see my way, hoping some day to see it on my 
return from a visit to you. . . . By the way, in the 
Missionary Hymn sent you last week, please for 
swarthy sons of Afric, read ransomed. I 
thought afterwards, if the hymn found its way to 
Africa, her sons might resent being described by 
the colour of their skins. I like your hints given 
to your devotional meeting, How to take Christ 
with you through the day. 



44 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

"October 12. 

" Did I tell you we were actually going to try 
daily service, morning and evening, in Christ 
Church, beginning with All Saints Day? And 
possibly we shall arrange for the church to be open 
for some hours every day for private prayer, and 
always have an early communion every Sunday 
beside the others. Now that the altar is built and 
the wood laid, only may the Divine fire of the Lord 
fall from heaven ! My flock, on the whole, has 
taken to the proposal most kindly, but I suspect it 
needs to educate a generation up to daily services." 

" November 7. 

" I feel deeply what you say as to the baptism 
of the low caste, not immediately touching the 
Mohammedans and Hindoos. Still, every convert 
is a point of light, a point of contact with heaven. 
If we could gaze on the population of Delhi and its 
outskirts, from an angelic point of view, and may 
we not truly say, a Divine point of view, every true 
Christian is a Lot in Sodom to His eyes, who is 
the Father of all. Ministering spirits attend every 
believer." 

* December 12. 

" I preached last Sunday in St. Peter s, Eaton 
Square, to a congregation of nearly 2000 people. 
Bishop Maclagan has asked me to take two Quiet 
Days for his clergy on March 3rd and 4th. He gives 
his charge on March 2nd, and then his wish is that 
all the clergy of the Lichfield Diocese * should be 
on their knees before God together. He wants to 
gather them at three or four centres. Bishop 
W. W. How addresses those at Lichfield, and he 
asked me to take either Wolverhampton or Derby. 
I shrink very much from the undertaking, but 
have after all (D.V.) consented to take the Derby 
Retreat." 



HAMPSTEAD 45 

" December 19. 

" I am glad to have written those notulae (i.e. 
in the annotated edition of the Hymnal Com 
panion), as some things which passed through my 
hands, and which no one else knows, may interest 
some who dive into hymnology. 

" I am glad you will have had the opportunity 
of meeting Lord and Lady Lytton. Though these 
days seem aside from work, I believe they really 
are threads of another colour, which are woven into 
life s strange tissue, and necessary for its harmony 
and shading." 

"March 22, 1880. 

" You have been more than ever on my heart 
the last two days, for I have found out incidentally 
that a small committee had now been formed of 
my flock, to present me with a testimonial of the 
twenty-fifth anniversary of my ministry next month. 
Mr. Tatham hinted that there was such a project 
floating in their minds whether a purse, which 
would lighten my expenses if I took a journey to 
the East, would be a form acceptable to me. The 
present from the congregation to me for such an 
object would remove two of the greatest difficulties 
in the way of my going: (1) the expense, and (2) 
the leaving my flock behind. It would be the 
greatest joy this side heaven to get to you or to 
have you get to me." 

The testimonial was presented on May 7th. 

"March 18. 

" We had a very interesting and deep dis 
cussion on the Atonement, at our Clerical 
Friends in Council. I am sure we fail to grasp 
the full comfort of the grand central truth en 
shrined in Isaiah liii. No less than ten times 
are Christ s sufferings and death there connected 



46 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

with our sins. I anchor my soul on Isaiah liii. 
5-10 ; John i. 29 ; Rom. v. 21 ; 1 John ii. 6, and 
I feel no subtleties of reason can shake the security 
of this salvation. I am sure it is the most central 
truth of the Gospel, and the most central star of 
my firmament." 

"July 23, 1880. 

"We had our important consultative meet 
ing on Tuesday night about the Church Restora 
tion. A large number came, and there was 
considerable discussion, some strongly deprecating 
any decoration. Still, I think four-fifths of those 
present were for the plans submitted to them. I 
am sure it is right, that the church should shew 
in every part of it signs of the loving and reverent 
care of God s people for His house." 

September 17. 

He writes on the subject of the appointment 
as Secretary to the C.M.S. of a successor to his 
very dear friend the Rev. Henry Wright, " I 
have been asked if I would accept it." After 
discussing the reasons for and against it he says, 
"It is curious that I should be even named, just 
fifty years after my blessed father vacated it upon 
his appointment to Watton in 1830." 

The plans for his tour had been made, and 
he writes : " I hope that my cursory glimpses of 
India and Palestine may be of some help in 
after years as a member of the Church Missionary 
Committee." 

The long expected tour to India and Palestine 
was begun in October, when he and his wife, with 
a party of friends sailed from Liverpool in the 
Rydal Hall on the 23rd of that month. Some 



HAMPSTEAD 47 

account of their travels will be found in the 
Chapter dealing with his work for Missions. 
On May 22nd, 1881, he wrote 

"You will be devouring the new Revision 
as we are. It seems to me invaluable as a 
commentary, and as an expression of the ripest 
judgment of modern scholars as to readings and 
translations ; but the English is in many parts 
so bald and rough that it would never do to 
substitute it for our present revision without the 
most extensive recension." 

"July 8. 

" I must now (D.V.) preach a series of sermons 
on the Lord s Supper, and thus get on with my 
little manual for Rivingtons. And I find it an 
essential help always to preach on a subject on 
which I wish to write. It seems to bring you into 
contact with Him whose messenger you are, and 
so give a warmth and glow to words which would 
otherwise be cold, if clear. A sermon ought to be 
so different from an essay." 

" September 23, 1881. 

" You know I shrink as much as you do from 
high Calvinism. It seems opposed to the heart 
of the God and Father of us all. And yet I think 
we must not forget, how some of the grandest 
of men have been bred in schools that laid more 
stress on the sovereignty than on the creative love 
of God ; men from St. Augustine down to the 
Puritans, and lower down to our own time, con 
quering self and the world. They have grasped 
one truth, Whatsoever the Lord pleased, that 
did He in heaven and earth. And any real truth 
is so precious and so strong that, though weighted 
with many, however untrue inferences, it may 
accomplish a mighty work for God. The Puritan 



48 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

stock of New England have been America s 
might." 

Of the Newcastle Congress he writes 

"October 14, 1881. 

" My paper on music was well received, and 
I was warmly congratulated on it both by Beresford 
Hope and Mr. Randall of Clifton. But I am sure 
the whole tone of the Congress was higher than 
any I have hitherto attended, more courtesy, more 
spirituality, more true to our Reformed Church. 
At Edward Hoare s request, I sent up my card 
on the devotional day, and was asked to speak 
first after the readers. The subject was The 
Helps and Hindrances to the Spiritual Life from 
the Activities of the Day. Mr. Body came up 
afterwards and most heartily thanked me. The 
Archdeacon of Ely begged me to conduct a Quiet 
Day for the Clergy there next Lent, which I think 
I may be able to do. Came home via Liverpool 
for a quiet Sunday, and spoke to the Manchester 
Clergy at their Quiet Day at Alderley, Dean 
Stanley s birthplace." 

"October 28. 

" I quite felt what you say about H. s danger 
of going too far in the direction of admiration 
of what is true in Mahometanism. Not that we 
can ever admire the truth too much, but when 
men hold down the truth (Rom. i. 18) in un 
righteousness, it does not do to praise the truth 
they hold, without a faithful exposure of the un 
righteousness, the injustice which throttles it 
and holds it down. I shall be so glad if you can 
help him to a juster equilibrium of view." 

" November 11, 1881. 

" I have been glad of two days in the house for 
getting on with my book on the Lord s Supper. 



HAMPSTEAD 49 

I fear it will be longer than it ought to be. It is 
hard to say what one wants to say in few words. 
That is the use of poetry, of which the main 
characteristic always seems to me to be * condensed 
thought 

The return of his eldest son from India, in 
valided by fever, the following year, brings this 
correspondence to a close. It reveals the character 
of the writer whilst indicating the enlarged sphere 
of his activities. These continued to increase 
during the three years which elapsed before his call 
to the Episcopate. At Nottingham, Cheltenham, 
Sunderland, Wigan, Oxford, Sheffield, and other 
places, he spoke to the hearts and consciences of 
great numbers of people, many of whom owe their 
beginning to lead different lives to these missions. 

The allusions in his letter to the Clerical 
Friends in Council should be explained. A few 
years before, some leading clergy of different 
schools of thought had agreed to meet and discuss 
with prayer the subjects which they were wont 
to regard from divergent points of view. It was 
felt that such intercourse would tend to draw 
closer to each other those who loved God and 
His truth, that it would promote brotherly kind 
ness, and tend to soften prejudice. The Bishop of 
St. Andrew s writes : 

" How tenderly he healed all disputes and joined 
in every effort, like our Clerical Friends in Council, 
which was intended to bring peace to the Church. 
I remember so many instances in which this Christ- 
like spirit was manifested." 

Not a few of the original members of the Society, 

E 



50 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

like himself, became Bishops, and one of the Secre 
taries used to say that Mr. Gladstone must have 
got hold of the list of members for his appointments 
to bishoprics and deaneries. 

The Bishop of London made Mr. Bickersteth 
one of the members of the small Committee of 
Clergy who were intrusted with the organization of 
the great Mission for London in 1884-5. His 
tact, his soundness of judgment, and his ability as 
an organizer were such that Bishop Jackson 
brought his name before the Prime Minister, as 
one of those who were fitted for higher ministries 
in the Church. 

Thus at sixty, a period in these days of feverish 
activity, when men who have laboured long in 
other callings begin to think of putting off their 
armour, he girded up his loins for the work of 
a Bishop in the Church of God, a work which he 
was to carry on for fifteen years. Thus were the 
words fulfilled, " To him that hath shall more be 
given," and he had learned at the Mercy-seat how 
to gain "power with God and with man." 

The retrospect of his life at Hampstead, from 
his own point of view, is well described in the 
ensuing passage from the farewell sermon to his 
congregation, in Christ Church, which he preached 
on Sunday, March 15, 1885 : 

" The first sermon I preached in this pulpit at 
the end of April, 1855, was from the words of our 
Lord, I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will 
draw all men unto Me, and I can truly say my 
one desire has been to preach Christ among you, 
for He was my life, and I knew He must be yours. 



HAMPSTEAD 51 

Would to God that I had preached Him with 
more faith, and power, and love ! 

" But I have tried to preach Him and Him 
only. And His promise has been verified : many 
souls have been drawn to the foot of His cross, 
and His dear servants have fed on the bread of life. 

" As I look back upon the thirty years which have 
passed like a dream, scene after scene rises before me ; 
the counsel and co-operation of my fellow-labourers 
in the Gospel ; the kindness with which you have 
always admitted me to your homes in the most 
sacred seasons of sorrow and of joy ; your sympathy 
with me in like manner when grief has shadowed 
or blessings gladdened my home ; the confiding 
trustfulness with which you have sought counsel of 
me in the things of God, and especially in the 
training of your children ; the mutual comfort we 
have had in our schools, boys and girls , and infants 
schools, our sailors orphans, our weekday and 
Sunday schools ; the refreshment of our Bible 
classes, children s and adult classes, when our hearts 
have so often burned within us, while Jesus Himself 
drew near, and opened to us the Scriptures ; and 
then our confirmations, when so very many have 
joined themselves to the Lord in a covenant which 
was never afterwards broken ; our prayer meetings, 
our communicants meetings how many can testify, 
It has been good to be there ; our united efforts 
for the home and foreign missions of our Church, 
for the recovery of the outcast and the lost, and for 
the world-wide diffusion of the Word of God, and 
of the Gospel of Jesus Christ oh, it has been good 
to have been encircled with such a band of men 
and women and children, whose hearts God has 
touched with the holy fire of the Saviour s love ! 
and chiefest of all, our services in this house of 
prayer, which you in your generous kindness so 
beautifully restored, and our gatherings round the 
Table of our dear Lord and Master. 



52 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

"The retrospect passes like a diorama before 
the mind s eye, and it is gone; but it engraves 
more clearly than ever on the tablet of my soul 
the words of the patriarch, I am not worthy of 
the least of all the mercies and of all the truth 
which thou hast shewed unto Thy servant. 

" Nor is it only those who are with us to-day : 
how many have gone forth from our congregation ; 
some to distant homes in our own land ; and not a 
few to foreign lands, where they are faithfully 
serving Jesus ; and I cannot, I would not, 
especially on this day, when in a thousand churches 
England is thinking of her soldier hero and martyr 
forget the saints indissolubly one with us who 
have passed from our embraces on earth to the 
society of glory. Oh, brothers and sisters in Christ, 
what a company is gathering there around the 
Throne ! That pure and simple Gospel, which was 
their guide through life, was their stay in the dark 
valley (by how many a dying bed have I and my 
fellow-labourers in the Gospel been permitted to 
kneel !) and ushered them into the presence of their 
Lord. 

" But I must not linger any more upon the 
past though the mere effort to count up the mercies 
of years gone by gives fresh emphasis to the words, 
I thank my God upon every remembrance of you 
always in every prayer of mine for you all making 
request with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel 
from the first day until now ; being confident of 
this very thing, that He which hath begun a good 
work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus 
Christ. " 



CHAPTER IV 

1885-1900 

Deanery of Gloucester Nomination to the See of Exeter Farewells at 
Hampstead Consecration Enthronement Confirmations Ordi- 
ations Relations with his clergy The Cathedral The Chapter 
Hospitality Church Congress. 

" Be to the flock of Christ a shepherd." 

The Consecration of Bishops. 
" So he fed them with a faithful and true heart. * 

PSALM Ixxviii. 73. 

EARLY in the year 1885, Edward Bickersteth was 
appointed to the Deanery of Gloucester, then 
vacant by the death of Dean Law. It was felt 
that such a post would give him leisure for literary 
work, as well as a higher vantage-ground for 
evangelistic and missionary labour. He would 
speak of his three R s, " Reading, Writing and 
Rest," and how he would enjoy them. He went 
down to Gloucester to be instituted and to make 
arrangements for his removal thither. But it was 
not so to be. The particulars of the sudden in 
terruption of his plans are best told in his own 
words. 

On January 27, he wrote 

" You will have heard of Gladstone s telegram ; 
his letter reaching me at Gloucester some half-hour 
before I was installed. It was too late to stop the 

53 



54 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

installation, for I had been instituted the day 
before. The letter told me that I would be 
offered an English See, one of two, either Lincoln 
or possibly Exeter. You will pray for me much 
that I may see and do the Master s will only. I 
had counted on rest, but if He says Work on till 
the time come, His will is and must be best. 
How humbly and holily we ought as a family 
to walk with God ! " 

These words indicate the spirit in which he 
received the summons, and set himself to fulfil the 
responsibilities of the Episcopal office, responsi 
bilities so vast as to justify the supposition of the 
author of the " Celestial Hierarchy," that whereas 
each Christian soul has its guardian angel, an arch 
angel is deputed by God to guard and defend 
every Bishop of His Church. 

On February 14, he wrote again 

"The rush of congratulations has subsided, 
though there is still a dropping fire of letters. 
I have not as yet had an answer from the Arch 
bishop as to the day of my consecration. I hope 
it will be April 25, for confirmations begin on 
May 11." 

He sent a letter to all the Clergy of his future 
Diocese of Exeter begging their prayers, both on 
the day of his consecration and during the interim. 

A letter of March 14, tells of the loving present 
table, writing-case, lamp, and a testimonial of 
1000 to be given him at the ensuing Easter Vestry 
on April 9, and " then best of all, a Bickersteth 
Memorial Hall for a Mission Room, Workmen s 
Coffee Room and Institute, at the cost of some 



EXETER 55 

2600, on White Bear Green ; so mercies abound." 
And a few days later he says 

" We had a most heart- warming day yesterday : 
the Church thronged and a Thankoffering for the in 
numerable mercies which we had received as pastor 
and flock for the last thirty years. It amounted 
to 108 18s. and was devoted to inscribe John 
Tucker s name on the Memorial tablet of the 
C.M.S. House." 1 

He made a farewell visit to Gloucester, where 
he took the Holy Week Services in the Cathedral, 
and preached several times, so that he might feel he 
had done something for those people to whom, in 
the providence of God, he had been called to 
minister, albeit recalled at once. 

On St. Mark s day, 1885, he was consecrated as 
Bishop of Exeter, hi St. Paul s Cathedral, together 
with Dr. Edward King, the new Bishop of Lincoln. 
The presenting Bishops for him were his predecessor, 
Dr. Temple, Bishop of London, and Dr. Thorold, 
Bishop of Rochester. The preacher, Canon Liddon, 
delivered a famous discourse on the Episcopal 
Office, a masterpiece of reasoned eloquence and 
illuminated erudition which thrilled his vast audi 
ence, including those who could not follow him in 
all his conclusions. 

Bishop Bickersteth did homage on his appoint 
ment to the See of Exeter, and on May 6, he 
reached Devonshire, where he spent his first night 
at Sowton Rectory with Archdeacon Sanders, it 
being the custom for a Bishop of Exeter, when 
newly consecrated, to enter the city for his 

1 See Missionary Chapter. 



56 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

enthronement. At this ceremony which was very 
impressive, he gave an address upon the words, 
" Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, 
saith the Lord of Hosts," words which struck the 
keynote of his Episcopate, words in which he cast 
himself upon the sympathy and prayers of the 
Diocese. 

As he went in and out amongst clergy and 
laity, there was the impression left everywhere, 
which is best expressed in the words of the Shuna- 
mite respecting Elisha, " Behold, now, I perceive 
that this is an holy man of God which passeth by 
us continually," and this impression grew and 
deepened unto the end. 

Of no man could it be more truly said that 
" the lines had fallen to him in pleasant places." 
Devonshire was to him an enchanted land, with its 
unrivalled scenery of river, coast and moor, its 
wonderful charm of quiet vales and wooded slopes. 
No one loved better 

" Its show of mountain hoary ; 

Winding shore and deepening glen ; 
Where the landscape in its glory, 
Teaches truth to wandering men." 

Nature was to him the sanctuary of the Eternal, 
and his poetic instincts, imbued as they were by the 
grace of God, enabled him to enjoy to the full the 
wealth of beauty and grandeur which his journeys 
up and down the Diocese opened out to him. None 
could find more to calm and cheer, to soothe and 
subdue, in places which were the constant scene of 
his official duties. He held that nothing was so 
helpful, as he once said in speaking on the 19th 



EXETER 57 

Psalm, "as the balanced contemplation of the 
works and word of God," which he illustrated from 
the structure of the Psalm itself. Shortly after 
coming to Devonshire, the Mayor of Tiverton at a 
dinner said to him, " Bishop, you are a great 
traveller ; have you made up your mind where the 
Garden of Eden was ? " " Certainly," was the 
reply. " Do let us know." " Why, Devonshire ! " 

Nor did he less highly prize " the goodly heri 
tage " of church, civic and county life upon which 
he entered as chief pastor of the ancient See of the 
West. The Cathedral was eloquent to him, of 
churchmen, citizens, patriots, who had served their 
generation according to the Will of God, many of 
them indeed, " leaving footprints on the sands of 
time," the rest consisting of those whose names, 
though forgotten amongst men, are in everlasting 
remembrance, being written in the Book of Life. 

Edward Bickersteth succeeded to a bishopric 
which had great traditions, his immediate pre 
decessors Frederick Temple and Henry Philpotts 
having been mighty and masterful prelates. And 
it may be truly said that no Bishop ever rendered 
a more ungrudging homage to the greatness and 
goodness of the man whom he succeeded. He 
used to speak of him as " a king of men," and Dr. 
Temple who had not known him before his 
appointment, said to a friend after seeing him for 
the first time, " That man will do : he is so 
transparently good." 

Only a very cursory review of Bishop Bicker- 
steth s administration of the Diocese can be given 



58 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

within the limits of this book. The main features 
of it, however, may be sketched and then illus 
trated by extracts from his letters and public 
utterances. 

It may be well to begin with his confirmations. 
Of these he wrote on May 23, 1885 

" I have taken now six Confirmations, and I 
think that I shall enjoy this work the most. It is 
more like my old pastoral dealings with young 
hearts. ... I especially enjoyed confirmation 
work on Friday and yesterday. At Coleridge, a 
ruinous church, its walls green with mould and 
windows blocked with broken shutters, there were 
some warm loving hearts, and I have promised to 
begin a subscription list for restoration, as it was 
my first confirmation." 

He valued most highly the opportunities, thus 
afforded him, of getting into personal touch with 
the rank and file of the laity in his Diocese. Every 
where hearts were won by his true fatherliness. 
All were attracted by his earnestness, by the power 
with which he realized the love of Christ both to 
himself and to those amongst whom he came. 
None ever spoke with fuller belief " in the Fatherly 
Hand" which would ever be over His children, 
and of which the laying on of the Bishop s hand 
was an abiding pledge and token. 

He would ask the question of each candidate 
by name, if the numbers were not too large. He 
also gave a Memorial Card on which were happily 
chosen words of Scripture, with the prayer at the 
imposition of hands which all were exhorted to use 
for themselves every day. The Rural Dean in 



EXETER 59 

each neighbourhood acted as his Chaplain when he 
confirmed. 

The Confirmations averaged about one hundred 
and twenty a year, and the total number of those 
upon whom he laid hands during fifteen years was 
between seventy and eighty thousand. He was 
greatly concerned for the welfare of the boys on the 
Britannia, Impregnable, and the Lion, which were 
training ships for the Royal Navy, and his con 
firmations when he visited them were most im 
pressive. 

An experience of some years before his pro 
motion to the Episcopate, in the conduct of Quiet 
Days and Retreats for the Clergy, had equipped 
him in a remarkable degree for his ordination 
work. He ordained at Trinity and Advent in his 
cathedral. He felt that those who were set apart 
for the ministry should be sent forth from thence 
as the centre of Church Life in the Diocese. The 
candidates assembled on the Thursday in Ember 
week, and were entertained at the Palace. They 
were addressed by the Bishop himself on the first 
evening, and the following days were filled up with 
services, papers on pastoral subjects, and interviews 
with the Bishop and his examining Chaplains. 
Each day began with the Holy Communion and 
a short address, the other devotional exercises 
being Matins, a quiet hour in chapel conducted 
by one of the chaplains, and Evensong with an 
address. Some time was also set apart for medita 
tion and prayer. The Bishop himself gave the 
tone to the whole week, and did most to create 
and sustain the atmosphere of holy, restful calm, 



60 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

which was so fitting a prelude to the great service 
of the following Sunday. Messages never to be 
forgotten were spoken by Bishop Earle, now Dean 
of Exeter, Principal Chavasse, now Bishop of 
Liverpool, Archdeacon Sandford, Bishop Trefusis, 
Chancellor Edmonds, Prebendary Ponsonby, and 
others. These were full days for the Bishop, who, 
in addition to the interviews with the candidates, 
read over the sermons which those to be ordained 
priests had sent in, besides the pastoral papers, 
which were very searching. 

The influence of these conversations and criti 
cisms has left its impress upon many a career, and 
the young men found in their Bishop a true father 
in God, to whom they might open their griefs and 
unburden their difficulties. Those Ember seasons 
live in the hearts of all whose great privilege it 
was to take any part in them. 

Nor can the ordinations ever be forgotten by 
those who were present. The beautiful rendering 
of the service by the cathedral choir, the calm 
dignity of the Bishop, as with benign countenance 
and in accents of controlled emotion, he read the 
almost inspired and most inspiring service of 
ordination ; the hushed stillness which pervaded 
the worshippers as the " Veni Creator " was sung, 
and the laying on of hands upon the white-robed 
candidates, all this it is impossible to describe. To 
many, those services in the Cathedral at Exeter 
seemed to approach very nearly to that ideal of an 
ordination which the English Church has given in 
her Prayer-book. 

The Bishop insisted that the newly-ordained 



EXETER 61 

clergy should have the remainder of the day for 
rest, and would not permit them to disperse to 
their parishes until the following morning, after an 
early Celebration with a few words of farewell. 

The intellectual standard of the ordinees at 
Exeter was above the average chiefly because of the 
Philpotts Exhibitions for students at Oxford and 
Cambridge, which were awarded on condition that 
those who held them should be ordained at Exeter 
and remain in the diocese for two years. Thus 
not a few able men were attracted from the 
Universities. 

Three hundred and six deacons, and three 
hundred and thirty one priests, were ordained 
during the Bishop s tenure of the See. 

Another noteworthy feature of his regime was 
the method which he adopted in instituting clergy 
to their various spheres of labour. The ceremony 
took place in the chapel at the Palace, when he 
gave singularly apt addresses, emphasizing the 
solemnity of the occasion, and impressing those 
admitted with the dignity and responsibility which 
attached to then* several charges. 

His personal influence with the clergy was note 
worthy, particularly with those who, in his judg 
ment, had carried their ritual beyond the limits 
laid down by the Prayer-book. He honoured 
saintly and devoted clergy of every school, but 
he felt that he must be faithful to his episcopal 
vows, and call upon men, however earnest they 
might be, to conform both to the formal regula 
tions of the Church of England and to the spirit 
in which those regulations had been drawn up. 



62 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Those who came to speak with him on such 
points realized that they had to do, not with the 
lofty dignitary, or their ecclesiastical superior, but 
with a real father in God, who regarded his clergy 
with a loving affection. Prejudice was disarmed, 
reserve melted away, and the air was cleared for 
helpful discussion of the matters at issue. The 
spirit in which the High Church Clergy of the 
Diocese, almost without an exception, deferred to 
his wishes as their Bishop was honourable alike 
to him and to themselves. He had much cause 
for thankfulness in his efforts to promote the peace 
of the Church in his own jurisdiction. He wrote 
thus to one of his clergy : 

" I have read your touching letter of Friday 
last ; but I have never been able to swerve from 
my duty, as expressed by me at our Diocesan 
Conference. My own judgment coincides with 
the Archbishop s decision on Incense, Lights, and 
the Reservation of the Sacrament. I had already 
spoken of this provision in the Prayer-book for an 
appeal to the Archbishop of the Province. I said, 
* It may be that in course of time the laws of the 
Church of England will be altered, and permit 
reservation with strict safeguards to prevent 
abuses ; but that at present I felt obedience to the 
Archbishop s rulings was essential. Your own 
obedience to me, as your Bishop, has materially 
helped me, and I cannot but feel our Heavenly 
Father has looked lovingly upon your submission 
and faith ; your most affectionate father in God, 

E. H. EXON." 

And as there are sheep in every flock which go 
astray, so, alas ! there are to be met with in the 



EXETER 63 

Church, pastors who have fallen from their first 
estate, and become the sorest hindrance to their 
flocks as well as a reproach to their sacred calling. 
Sometimes it is impossible to bring such offenders 
under the operation of the Church s law, and they 
have remained in their parishes for years. Happily 
such cases have been rare. Bishop Bickersteth, 
although he could rebuke with severity when occa 
sion required, was able by his gentle, persuasive 
entreaties to bring about retirement, in some cases, 
where argument and authority would have been 
powerless. Meanwhile, he himself would go to 
such a parish and hold services there, considering 
himself the Pastor of the Church. 

The Cathedral Church naturally occupied the 
Bishop s first thought in coming to the Diocese. 
He had carefully read Archbishop Benson s " Ideals 
of a Cathedral," and he sought to make his own 
Cathedral a centre from which manifold influences 
and activities might radiate throughout the Diocese, 
whilst all its parishes and institutions could turn to 
it for guidance, inspiration and assistance. An 
interplay of forces might thus be set in motion 
which would tend to keep the life of the Church 
strong and fresh. 

The opportunity was soon given him to carry 
out such an ideal. The Chapter at Exeter was 
composed of old men whose term of service had 
nearly run out. Within a comparatively short 
time, he was called upon to fill all the Residentiary 
Canonries. The elevation of Archdeacon Earle 
to the episcopate, and the death of Archdeacon 
Barnes shortly after his installation, entailed the 



64 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

appointment to two of the Canonries a second 
time. 

The Bishop stipulated that the Canons should 
resign their pastoral cures, and devote themselves 
to some branch of diocesan work. To one Canon 
he assigned the care of Education, to another the 
promotion of Foreign Missions, to another the 
furtherance of Home Missions, and to the fourth 
the encouragement of study amongst the Clergy. 
His expectations were largely realized, and he 
would speak of his Canons with pride and 
thankfulness. 

Having spared no pains to find the right men, 
he gave them the freest scope, and his entire 
support. In Archdeacon Sandford he found a man 
for the times, an expert on education. Canon 
Trefusis (afterwards his assistant Bishop), Canon 
Atherton, and Chancellor Edmonds, did much to 
carry out the Bishop s ideal of the work of a 
Cathedral Chapter for the Diocese. His relations 
also with the Deans who presided over the Chapter 
during his episcopate were very cordial. He threw 
himself heartily into the effort to provide a new 
organ for the Cathedral, and his influence did much 
in obtaining the large sum of money which was 
required. 

Mention should also be made of the late Arthur 
Burch, Esq., whom he appointed his Diocesan 
Registrar, and whom he greatly valued as a per 
sonal friend and adviser. A sound lawyer, his 
sober cautious judgment and intimate knowledge 
of the West were freely placed at the service of 
his Bishop and the Diocese. 



EXETER 65 

He had also the satisfaction of offering the 
chancellorship of the Diocese to an old parishioner 
at Hampstead in the person of Sir Lewis Dibdin, 
now Dean of Arches. 

The Bishop worked the Diocese through his 
Rural Deans. He aimed at visiting a certain 
number of Rural Deaneries every year, going 
oftenest to the Three Towns, the most populous 
centre under his charge. 

A well-known Plymouth layman, writing in 
1888, said : 

" The great benefit of the division (of Exeter 
Diocese) has been that the Bishop has been able to 
visit every part of the Diocese more frequently, 
and to stay longer and show himself more 
among the people ; and there can be no doubt that 
the presence of a bishop among the people does 
produce a very great effect. Our Bishop spent ten 
days here last January, meeting the churchwardens, 
the Sunday school teachers, and other church 
workers, as well as the clergy, and visiting the 
schools, the hospitals, and the workhouse. All 
this did incalculable good" 

He visited 450 out of the 510 parishes in the 
Diocese, some of his holidays being spent in Devon 
shire, which enabled him to see something of the 
more retired parishes where his visitations had not 
extended. Once a year the Rural Deans met at 
the Palace for devotion and conference. Their 
visit coincided with one of the large gatherings 
composed of workers and others, whom the Bishop 
entertained at the Palace. 

One of the main responsibilities of his office was 

F 



66 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

the dispensing of patronage. His own appoint 
ments were now and then freely criticized, but no 
one ever questioned his singleness of mind. He 
took time to inquire and to consider, but when he 
had come to a decision, in dependence always upon 
God, he was bold and never flinched. He felt that 
the Church at home should recognize the claims of 
those who came back from the Mission field, and, 
where possible, provide them spheres of service. 
He sent a retired Missionary, of whose capacity and 
devotedness he was well assured, to one of the 
better endowed parishes in his gift. Those who 
had appointments to make often consulted him, 
and their confidence in his judgment frequently 
led them to appoint his nominee. He stood aloof 
from considerations of party, in this as well as 
other matters connected with the administration 
of the Diocese. 

Lord Salisbury, when Prime Minister, would 
consult him not only as to appointments to bene 
fices in his own Diocese, but also as to other and 
higher preferments. 

Any page from his book of engagements would 
show how " he abounded in the work of the Lord " 
in a multitude of ways. He was president of the 
Missionary Guild of St. Paul for work in Japan, 
and also of the Home and Colonial School Society, 
an institution for training teachers on Evangelical 
lines, for work at home and abroad. He pleaded 
the causes of all the diocesan societies and insti 
tutions besides the Pastoral Aid, the Addi 
tional Curates, the Church Missionary Societies : 
the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, the 



EXETER 67 

Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, the 
London Society for Promoting Christianity among 
the Jews, the Church of England Temperance 
Society, and others. He once held a drawing-room 
meeting at the Palace for the Palestine Exploration 
Fund. The Deaconess s House of Refuge owed 
its recovery from a serious crisis to his strenuous 
advocacy. He summoned a Conference of all the 
Union Chaplains, at which the spiritual provision 
already made, or still required in the Workhouses 
of Devonshire, was discussed. 

No account of the Bishop would be complete 
which did not mention his strong and persistent 
efforts for the promotion of Sunday Observance. 
He lifted up his voice in Convocation against 
resolutions which he felt would tend to weaken 
a cause so dear to his heart. He used to say, 
"There are two sacred ordinances which have 
come down to us from Eden, Holy Marriage the 
bond of human love, and the Holy Day of Rest 
binding men to God." 

The apostolic precept "A Bishop must be 
given to hospitality " found in Bishop Bickersteth 
one who greatly delighted to fulfil it. For many 
years he entertained every summer, immense 
gatherings of various kinds at his house. Church 
wardens and their wives, Day School Teachers, 
Sunday School Teachers, Organists and Choirs, 
Hospital Nurses, Lay Readers, Nonconformist 
Ministers, Bell Ringers, Policemen, Railway 
Servants, and Aged Persons, all from the Diocese 
partook of his hospitality. 

Luncheon was served in a marquee on the lawn 



68 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of the Palace Garden, and the afternoon, with an 
interval for the Cathedral service and an address 
by the Bishop which all were quite free to attend 
or not, was spent in the Palace and grounds. Tea 
followed later, at which there were brief speeches. 
One of the most interesting of these occasions 
was that upon which the Nonconformist ministers 
throughout the County were invited, of whom 
more than two hundred came. Such intercourse 
tended to promote kindly feeling, and to allay 
bitterness between those who loved their Lord, 
and yet could not see eye to eye upon many vital 
subjects. 

As this gathering of Nonconformist Ministers 
was one of unusual interest, a more detailed 
account of it may be given. The Bishop wrote 
the following letter of invitation to all the Evan 
gelical Nonconformist Ministers in the Diocese. 

The Palace, Exeter, 4th June* 
"MY DEAR SlR, 

" I have long felt, with the Archbishops 
of Canterbury and York, that it is greatly to be 
desired there should be more opportunities of social 
intercourse between the Clergy of the Church of 
England and their brethren in Christ, who are the 
Ministers of other Religious Communities. 

"As a humble effort towards the promotion 
of this fraternal intercourse, I am venturing to ask 
all the Nonconformist Ministers resident in Devon 
to meet some of the Clergy of my Diocese on 
Tuesday, July 7. I shall hope to have the privilege 
of introducing to them six representative brother 
Ministers from Germany, France, Italy, Switzer 
land, Holland, and America, who will be spending 



EXETER 69 

two days with me that week (D. V. ), after the Evan 
gelical Alliance Jubilee Commemoration, which 
will be held June 28 to July 4, in London. 

" I hope our friends will be able to gather by 
noon or shortly after, so that a Brief Devotional 
Meeting may be held in the Palace garden, in 
which I trust some of my guests will kindly take 
part. Luncheon will be at 1.15, and there will be 
a Service in the Cathedral at 3 o clock, at which 
the presence of any who desire to attend will be 
most welcome. This will be followed by an 
inspection of the Cathedral, the Chapter House 
and Library, and afternoon tea at 5 o clock. 

"May I hope that you will give me the 
pleasure of your company on that day ? 

" Yours in our One Lord, 
" Most sincerely, 

"E. H. EXON." 

The programme outlined in the above letter 
was carried out much to the satisfaction both of 
the Bishop and of his guests. He addressed them 
as follows : 

" My Brothers in Christ Jesus, most sincerely 
do I thank you for your presence to-day, and most 
heartily do 1 welcome you in our dear Master s 
Name. I have had the kindest replies to my 
invitation from almost all those who are unable to 
be with us to-day, saying how they would be one 
with us in spirit and in prayer. 

" Let me read but two letters, assuring you 
that they only breathe the spirit of very many 
responses ; one from an aged Nonconformist 
Minister, the Rev. James Ellis, of Ilfracombe, and 
another from a lay Churchman in the stress of 
work. A very large number are prevented from 
being with us, by being away from home, in their 



70 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

summer holiday month, and some I grieve to say, 
from sickness, and many from previous engage 
ments which they could not forego. 

" Then I have the great pleasure of introducing 
to you some Brothers in Christ from far-off lands, 
who came to England for the Evangelical Alliance 
Conference held this week in London, and have 
been good enough to honour us with their presence 
to-day. 

" Pasteur Theodore Monod from France. 

" Rev. Pastor Correva from Germany. 

" Dr. Comba from Italy. 

"Dr. Edouard Naville from Switzerland, a 
distinguished Egyptian Explorer. 

" Dr. Garth Van Wyk from Holland. 

" W. E. Dodge, Esq., from the United States, 
where he is the President of the Evangelical 
Alliance. 

" A. J. Arnold, Esq., the long-tried and trusted 
Secretary of the Alliance. 

"Pasteur Fra^ois Coillard, a devoted Mis 
sionary from Africa. 

" We bid them one and all welcome for Christ s 
sake. 

" We do not meet to-day to express conformity 
in Church discipline, for therein we differ in many 
things. But we do meet to evidence our con 
fraternity in the fundamental verities of the ever 
lasting Gospel, for therein we are one and shall be 
one for ever. 

" Wherein we differ, we desire, as the inspired 
apostle beseeches us, with all lowliness and meek 
ness and long suffering to forbear one another in 
love. And wherein we are one, we are endeavour 
ing to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of 
peace ; for we know there is one body, and one 
Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism ; one God 
and Father of all, who is above all and through all 



EXETER 71 

and in us all. And we recognize that to each 
there is given grace according to the measure of 
the gift of Christ. 

" In bidding most hearty welcome to our 
Nonconformist brethren from Devon, and to the 
delegates of the Evangelical Alliance so happily 
with us to-day, I would couple the names of the 
Rev. Dr. Macpherson, of Exeter, and W. E. 
Dodge, Esq., of the United States." 

In August, 1893, he wrote to his son and 
chaplain from Nevin : 

" A good many letters but nothing very urgent. 
The worst was on Tuesday morning from Arch 
deacon Sandford, forwarding one from Archdeacon 
Emery. They want the Church Congress to be 
at Exeter in 1894. Alas, alas ! but we must, 
if it comes, throw ourselves heartily into it and look 
for a blessing which will not be denied us." l 

The year was spent in vigorous preparation, 
clergy and laity alike giving the heartiest co 
operation to the undertaking. And when the 
time came, many causes contributed to bring 
about a very successful issue. The weather was 
propitious, and a large number of good speakers, 

1 The Bishop of Winchester, Dr. Thorold, who had been asked to 
take part in the Congress, wrote : 

"The Deanery, Winchester, October 23, 1893. 
" MY DEAR BROTHER, 

" Vigorous is the adjective for your address. It must have 
stirred and inspired the Conference. As to your Congress next year, 
nous verrons. One condition is indispensable that I am alive. A very 
much wounded bird hardly likes to look across the next hedge. I live 
and work with my life in my hands ; and though bacillus is not on my 
nerves, he is plentiful in nature. I was very sorry not to see your son. 
He is as able as he is good. 

Your affectionate friend, 

A. W." 



72 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

both clerical and lay, took part in the proceedings. 
The Bishop s opening speech was one of the most 
effective ever delivered at such an assemblage. As 
a rule he was not at his best as a platform speaker, 
but he could rise to the exigencies of a great 
occasion. 

The following were the main subjects of the 
Congress address. He said 

" Our manifold subjects will, I believe, mainly 
revolve around the two foci of Church Reform and 
the Church s Mission. They are inseparably con 
nected. One axis, Thy Will be done in its and 
by us, runs through them both. And, indeed, it 
is only an oblique section of the cone which pre 
sents us with the two foci of an ellipse. When 
the section is parallel with the base of the cone, 
a perfect circle is the result, and the two foci 
coalesce and form the one centre from which all 
lines radiate. Our basis is the Word of Truth. 
Our sections of thought are, I trust, becoming 
more and more parallel with it, and as we pray 
believingly, Let Thy continual pity cleanse and 
defend Thy Church, that it may be devoutly given 
to serve Thee in all good works, Church Reform 
and the Church s Mission, will be more and more 
fused into one, till they both find their consumma 
tion in the fulfilment of the prayer 

"Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." 

After pointing out that he would limit his 
words " to the need of perfecting that sifting and 
solid Church Reform" which had already been 
begun, he said that if this were done, we as 
Churchmen should be able to gird up our loins 
and obey what the Iron Duke called " our Marching 



EXETER 73 



Orders." The secret of our not having done more 
to evangelize the world, was to be found in the 
want of more solid Church reform. 



BIBLICAL CRITICISM 

With reference to Biblical criticism, the follow 
ing words show the Bishop was not afraid of that 
which is of a reverent and serious kind. 

" This faith of our fathers is our faith, and, God 
helping us, we will hand it down to our children, 
though it be tried with fire, without the loss of 
a single grain of gold. England s Church has 
never feared Biblical criticism when serious and 
reverent, and hence we stand on a far higher 
level than those who unconvinced, are compelled 
to submit, if not to subscribe, to the recent 
encyclical letter from the Vatican. ... Of infer 
ences drawn from insufficient premises the name 
is legion ; speculations and guesses there are with 
out number ; plausible but unproved theories fall 
round us thick as the leaves of Vallombrosa. But 
of these, further research has exposed many ; the 
recent discoveries of travellers have refuted others ; 
and the arguments and surmises of agnostics con 
sume one another in rapid succession. They breed 
with marvellous fecundity, but like Saturn, they 
devour their own children and the bleached bones 
only remain. . . . 

"The reaction against hasty inference from 
uncertain discoveries, has already set in, and I 
doubt not will gradually become a solid re-forma 
tion of thought ; for we are learning in Biblical 
criticism, as in many other things, to refuse the 
evil and choose the good, and the words are 
engraven more deeply than ever on our hearts, 



74 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

In your patience ye shall win your souls. If 
Cicero could say, Opinionum commenta delet dies, 
naturae judicia confirmat, we respond with the 
inspired seer, The grass withereth, the flower 
fadeth, but the word of our God shall stand for 



ever. 



SUPERANNUATION OF THE CLERGY 

The words on this subject created notice at 
the time, and are emphasized by the fact that the 
Bishop himself acted six years later on the advice 
then given. 

" The compulsory retirement of superannuated 
and disabled clergy is still unattained, and yet no 
departmental authorities, military or civil, would 
tolerate men retaining responsible posts which 
demand active service, when they could no longer 
discharge the duties appertaining to those posts. 

" In our Navy and Army, officers are obliged 
to retired at a certain age according to their rank. 
No manager of a bank, no director of a railway, 
no surgeon or physician of a hospital, holds on to 
his place when superannuated or disabled. But if 
clergymen of all ranks, bishops, deans, archdeacons, 
canons, incumbents, curates, were obliged to resign 
at three score years and ten, unless they could 
produce a medical certificate from a nominated 
physician in the diocese, that they appeared fully 
able to continue their episcopal or clerical work for 
the next twelve months, a certificate to be renewed 
year by year, it would relieve the Church from 
many burdens ; and promotions would be healthily 
accelerated. Those who resigned would pass from 
the Executive to the Consultative ranks of the 
clergy ; but not a few would easily claim, and annu 
ally renew their certificate of health and strength 



EXETER 75 

until they passed four score years and more, and 
haply their last works would be among their fruit- 
fullest and best. There is a prelate l on our bench 
over ninety years of age, whose unwearied labours 
would surpass the powers of many a man of sixty. 
Still, the criterion I have named would meet the 
most serious cases of superannuation. And if this 
retirement from active ministry were foreseen by 
the clergy, prevision would beget provision. They 
would generally insure their li ves for a sum to be 
paid at death, or on attaining seventy years, and 
when such an insurance is effected in early man 
hood, the additional yearly premium is very small. 
Now, if besides this, all clergymen upon their 
ordination, were obliged to subscribe to a society 
such as the Clergy Pensions Institution, which is 
making rapid and solid progress . . . they would 
receive a substantial annuity at the age of sixty- 
five." 

The Bishop closed with a reference to a third 
source of income in the allowance granted under 
the Incumbents Resignation Act. 



EDUCATION 

" The Church is called to act in loco parentis 
to the children of our fatherland. The Master s 
pastoral charge to St. Peter, * Feed my lambs, 
comes before Shepherd my sheep. And what is 
education without religion? I was sitting, as a 
young man, some fifty years ago by my father s 
side in a great educational meeting at Norwich, 
when an advocate for secular education harped on 
the words, educate, educate, educate, as the one 
panacea for all our social ills. I well remember 

1 Bishop Duruford of Chichester. 



76 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

my father s saying to me, * Let them educate the 
children ever so much, without religion they will 
never make them so clever as the Devil. 

"England, as a nation, abhors secularism, and 
those who know teachers and parents best, can 
testify to their warm and genuine gratitude for 
definite religious instruction being required in our 
schools. The minority who oppose it are loud- 
throated ; but for all that their voice is not the 
voice of England. As to the financial maintenance 
of Church schools, subscribers to all inspected and 
accredited voluntary schools for the working classes, 
whether Protestant or Roman, or Jewish schools, 
surely ought to be allowed on producing a receipt, 
to deduct the amount of their subscriptions from 
the Board School rates. It is unequal and unjust 
to tax or squeeze philanthropists in both ways." 

TEMPERANCE 

" While I earnestly hope the temptations to 
drunkenness will be extensively reduced by the 
suppression of needless public houses (compensation 
being allowed to every interest involved), I confess 
my hopes lie mainly in the direction of the Bishop 
of Chester s Bill, which recognizes that the public 
house of entertainment is necessary for the com 
fort, recreation, and social intercourse of the people, 
and that reform, rather than abolition, must be the 
aim of a sound temperance policy. And for this, 
the placing of licensed victualling should be in 
public hands, giving to their management the 
character of a public trust, and eliminating, as far 
as possible, the motive of private gain ; in fact, the 
Gottenberg system adapted to English customs 
and English society. Intemperance is a national 
abscess ; the abscess requires the surgeon s lancet, 
but the nation needs the food of wholesome 
recreation and refreshing society." 



EXETER 77 



FOREIGN MISSIONS 

A vigorous appeal for greater missionary enter 
prise was a keynote of the address. 

"We need not revolutionize systems of mis 
sions which have worked well, or substitute new 
ideal systems which some think would work better ; 
the best is, after all, the enemy of the good. Pro 
bably now the Church of England cannot do 
evangelistic work more efficiently than through 
the two great missionary confederations, the S.P.G. 
or the C.M.S. with their many younger sister 
societies. But ought she not to double her mis 
sionary forces before the 20th century dawns (that 
is in rather more than six years), and account this 
as only an earnest of far greater things ? Is it 
too much to say that if we gave one-tenth of our 
clergy and their faithful lay helpers to the mani 
fold mission fields (sorely as we should miss them 
at home) England s Church would be the gainer, 
not the loser ; for the blood, which is the life, would 
course more freely through her veins ? 

"If we were making disciples of all nations, 
it would be our strongest Church defence, a 
mighty magnet for home reunion, a signal to 
the ends of the earth. * The Lord is at hand. 
Some devoted men would go forth in brotherhood 
as members of community missions ; some holy 
women would go as deaconesses or sisters ; neither 
men nor women I hope bound by vows of celibacy. 
That saintly French prelate of the 17th century, 
Nicholas Pavilion, Bishop D Alet, entirely pro 
hibited the goodly fellowship of sisters he gathered 
round him and employed hi his Diocese, from 
taking vows, feeling as he wrote to the Princess 
de Conti, It is better to serve God with a full 



78 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

heart and a mind at liberty, than to expose your 
self to the temptation of regretting the sacrifice, 
which you have irrevocably made, and which you 
may make with freedom daily. Doubtless both 
married and unmarried missionaries are needed." 



MOBILIZATION OF FORCES 

" Mobilization of forces has proved itself a most 
essential factor in modern strategy. In the Franco- 
German War of 1870, France was conquered not 
only by the greatest of Emperors and by Bismarck, 
the ablest of diplomatists, but also by Moltke, who 
with mathematical precision had wrought out the 
plan of the campaign before a shot was fired. 
Japan is teaching the nations of the far east the 
same lesson both by land and sea. Has the 
Church Militant learned how, rightly and rapidly, 
to mobilize her missionary forces ? " 

" CATHOLIC PARTY " 

" As the phrase Catholic Party has been twice 
used this morning, I must, as President, say that 
the two things seem to me inconsistent, Catholic 
and Party. We are members of the Holy Catholic 
Church. Can a party be Catholic ? " 




THE BISHOP WITH TWO OF HIS GRANDCHILDREN, 1886. 



CHAPTER V 

1885-1900 

Home life at Exeter Letters Lambeth Conference Death of Bishop 
Edward Bickersteth of South Tokyo Recollections Presentation 
of portrait. 

"True to the kindred points of heaven and home." 

WORDSWORTH. 

SOME account of the Bishop s home life at Exeter 
will follow appropriately upon the description in 
the preceding chapter, of his public work. Its 
main sources are letters written by him to his son, 
Bishop Edward Bickersteth in Japan, and recollec 
tions of members of his family, and of others who 
had frequent intercourse with him. The exigencies 
of a busier life did not allow time for letters such 
as he had written in his Hampstead days, but they 
give an outlook upon things from another stand 
point and reveal " the hidden man of the heart," in 
one who touched the life of his time on many sides. 
He writes on January 13, 1887 : 

" Our hearts are so full of the sudden death of 
our friend and neighbour Lord Iddesleigh ; we can 
think of little else. Only last Friday, he spoke at 
our Queen s Jubilee County Meeting for three- 
quarters of an hour in a masterly speech. I helped 
him to put his coat on after the meeting, for which 
he thanked me so gracefully. Last Monday I had 
a quarter of an hour with him in his study, in which 

79 



80 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

he spoke so brightly of China and Japan, and now 
that busy brain and loving heart, which have wrought 
and beat so warmly for England for forty years of 
statesmanship, are still. I have to preach at Upton 
Pynes, his little Parish Church, on Sunday next, 
and think of speaking on the words, David, after 
he had served his generation by the will of God, 
fell on sleep. I am sure Lord Iddesleigh served 
his generation right faithfully. We have lost a 
true friend in him, and England and the Empire a 
sagacious watchman and peacemaker. Happily we 
may sing 

" O God our help in ages past, 
Our hope for years to come." 

"July 13, 1887. 

"Yesterday I was preaching at Martinhoe in 
the afternoon, such a rustic church, on Stretch 
forth thine hand. A thought which has been in 
my mind lately is this : 

" I ought, I can, I will. 

" * I can because I ought, for God never lays 
an impossible duty upon us, and then * I will 
because I ought and can. 

On December 26, 1889, he writes : 

" Yesterday I preached on We know that the 
Son of God has come (1 John v. 20), the Incarna 
tion, the pledge of all that Divine love has done 
and has promised to do for us, and the key to the 
dark riddles and mysterious providences of our 
Lord, in our pilgrim life. I spoke a few words on 
that which I know must have struck a deep chord 
of sympathy and sorrow in your heart, as in ours, 
the death of dear Bishop Lightfoot. I know how 
you loved him, how deep the debt you feel you 
owe him. But I said one thing in passing which 



EXETER 81 

S. warmly thanked me for in the vestry. If it 
were not for the communion of the mystical body 
of Christ in earth and heaven, we should say how 
inestimably poorer the Church was for the loss of 
that luminous mind, that evenly balanced judgment, 
that richly stored memory. But the Church never 
loses any of her wealth. It is of God and in God s 
keeping. You felt on what a slender thread his life 
hung, when you left England. But the Master 
Sculptor had the finishing touches to put to His 
work, and now we can only say, * It is the Lord. 

" Upper House of Convocation, February 6, 1891. " 

" My ordination day as deacon, 1848. What a 
retrospect of mercies and shortcomings ! It has 
been an interesting Convocation, principally about 
brotherhoods and sisterhoods. I do not like dis 
pensable vows, and am fortified by Bishop Light- 
foot s protest not two years ago. In the first place, 
I do not believe anybody ought to take lifelong 
vows of this character when he cannot foresee the 
future : nor do I believe that a Bishop has such a 
dispensing power, regarding a vow made to God. 
The whole matter seems to me to lie in foro 
conscientiae. 

" I had a conversation with the Archbishop 
yesterday, re the possibility of a suffragan. He 
will patiently consider it, but evidently feels the 
clergy do not like suffragans as they do their own 
temporal bishops." 

4 March 20, 1891. 

"Now that I am treading the border land of 
old age, the mighty verities of the Cross and the 
Resurrection, seem more impregnable and more 
necessary. When flesh and heart must at the 
longest soon fail, the Crucified and Risen Incarnate 
God is alone our strength and portion for ever. I 

G 



82 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

am glad you are studying Leighton. The inimit 
able charm of his writing is, of course, not his 
Churchmanship, but that refined and cultured 
heavenly-mindedness, which rises above the needful 
lines of demarcation, within which we must work 
until the day dawn and the shadows flee away. 

In August 1891, the Bishop, accompanied by 
his wife and one of his daughters, started on a 
journey to Japan. Besides the joy of visiting his 
son, Bishop Edward Bickersteth, of South Tokyo, 
there was one object very dear to his heart, "to see 
how his brethren did in the mission field." A 
description of this journey, which was in a very 
real sense a missionary journey, is reserved for the 
chapter on his missionary work. 

On January 14, 1892, he writes : 

" The death of the Duke of Clarence, at 9 a.m., 
is filling our hearts to-day. There is something 
inexpressibly sad in one who was counting on his 
wedding next month (and the bride-elect under 
the roof at Sandringham), called so suddenly away. 
The national sympathy is intense. There has been 
nothing like it since the Prince of Wales illness 
twenty years ago. I am to preach on it next Sun 
day in the Cathedral (D.V.), and think of taking 
the words, The grass withereth, the flower fadeth, 
but the word of God shall stand for ever. 

"June 16, 1892. 

" We had our meeting of Western Bishops ; 
two came, but Ubi tres, ibi ecclesia. We always 
have our spiritual subject, and it fell to me to 
suggest and to open it. It was on the special 
perils which beset us as Bishops, and the special 



EXETER 83 

privileges which are ours (1) in preaching, (2) in 
confirming, (3) in ordaining, (4) in correspondence, 
(5) in shepherding the shepherds, (6) in society, 
(7) in exercising discipline, (8) in dealing with Non 
conformists, (9) in fulfilling the office of Father in 
God to the lay people." 

" September 1, 1892. 

"Spent last Sunday at Princetown, and con 
firmed twenty-two of the prisoners. I think I told 
you of my friend the king of the burglars whom 
I confirmed five years ago. He is a convict under 
a life sentence for firing at and dangerously wound 
ing a policeman and a postman, when rifling a house 
in London. I asked after him, and was so thankful 
to hear that he was staunch and true. The chaplain 
told me that the first religious impression was made 
upon him when committing a burglary at Brighton. 
The plan of the house was given him, and he was 
told off to break into it. He got in, and, dark 
lantern in hand, entered a young lady s bedroom, 
took her watch and gold ornaments from her dress 
ing-table and mantelpiece ; and then turning on a 
little light, he saw in a cheval looking-glass that 
she was sitting up in bed and watching him. He 
turned the light down, but as he passed her bed in 
leaving the room, he felt her hand laid on his 
shoulder, and she said, Have you a mother ? It 
struck him all of a heap he said, Yes, I have. 
Do you, she asked, * love your mother ? He said, 
I do. Well, then, she said, I have a mother 
in the next room. Will you promise you won t go 
in there ? I know the fright would kill her, for 
she is weak and ill ; promise me. He promised, 
and she began to speak to him about his course of 
life. He felt cowed, and he put down her watch 
and all he had taken on the floor, and said to her, 
I won t trouble anything in this house. And at 
once he left the house, and though he returned to 



84 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

his predatory life in London, he never forgot it. 
The simple story struck me much. 

" Our poor gardener died quite suddenly in our 
garden at Exeter yesterday : He was a true 
Christian servant with but one talent which he 
faithfully laid out, and I doubt not entered into the 
joy of his Lord." 

" October 13, 1892. 

" The Times yesterday put in a letter I wrote on 
Tennyson s mother s funeral. There had been pro 
found feeling in the public mind, which I am per 
suaded is a tribute to the real faith Tennyson had 
in God and His Word and his Gospel, and the 
sweet home-purity he loved and sung. 

" I am sorry A. shrinks from Holy Orders after 
all ! Perhaps longer experience of life will convince 
him of the blessed power for influencing which TO 
^apio-fia TOV eov y through the laying on of hands, 
brings. 

" I send you Henry Martyn s new life ; the book 
is an immense improvement on its predecessor, 
though I still feel Martyn did not walk in all the 
freedom wherewith Christ makes His servants free ; 
and yet more strongly feel his Lydia ought to 
have gone out to him." 

"January 17, 1894. 

" I was so deeply interested in your mapping 
out the vast Empire of Japan with the American 
Bishop, for Christ. His it is, and shall be for ever. 
It reminds me of the command to Abraham, 
* Arise, walk through the land in the length of 
it : for I will give it unto Thee." 

"February 9, 1894. 

" I have been reading with deepest interest 
Dean Church s Oxford Movement. It is most 
masterly as all his writings are, most vivid, most 



EXETER 85 

helpful in many things, but alas ! (though uninten 
tionally I am sure, for he was ever a lover of truth), 
most defective and unjust to the grand Evangelical 
Revival in the Church of England from 1780 to 
1830. I doubt not his estimate was from want of 
knowledge and research, for I am sure there have 
seldom been 50 years of nobler triumphs of the work 
ing of the Spirit of God on human hearts, in the 
long history of the Church s warfare. Men like 
Henry Venn, and Wilberforce, and Henry Martyn, 
and Scott, and Simeon, and Biddulph, and Cecil, 
men who laid the foundations of the C. M.S., certainly 
the most warrior-like army of the soldiers of the 
cross which the Church has known for many cen 
turies, are not to be passed over with the sneering 
criticisms of good Dean Church, blessed man as he 
was. Oh 1 for largeness of heart to grasp the good 
of all good men 1 for all are ours, and I have ever 
felt the three great Revivals, the Evangelical Re 
vival, the Missionary Revival, the Church Revival, 
are interlinked inseparably, and call for the adoring 
thanks of all lovers of the truth." 

" May 23, 1894. 

"Last week was a crowded week with an 
ordination. But I do not think in all the 19 
ordinations held here on the Trinity Sundays and 
in Advent since I came in 1885, we have ever had 
such a delightful set of men ; all graduates, 12 from 
Cambridge, 9 from Oxford, 2 from Dublin ; but all 
so thoughtful and spiritual, and all so grateful for 
the quiet restfulness of the 3j days." 

" June 26, 1894. 

We had the most delightful meeting of Rural 
Deans, Canons, and Archdeacons last Wednesday 
and Thursday. It was quite an intellectual feast, 
as well as a social luxury. It was followed by the 
meeting of organists from all parts of my Diocese, 



86 

for luncheon, conversazione, wandering over our 
house, a perfect musical service in the Cathedral, 
and then returning for tea in the garden. All was 
sunshine and mercy." 

"Cromer, August 30, 1894. 

" I preached at Banningham to a thronged 
Church full, [indeed they were standing outside 
the windows], on the Exceeding great and 
precious promises given to us (2 Peter i.). It was 
touching to see the loving remembrance of those 
among whom I laboured 46 years ago ; but few 
remain to greet me ; still tradition is strong." 

" October 4, 1894. 

" I hope to be able to send you an early copy of 
my opening address [at the Congress] by to-night s 
mail. I have touched on so many debatable ques 
tions, I dare say I shall be harshly criticised. Still, 
if the Master approves, that is all, and I am very 
thankful to have interwoven Church Reform and 
the Church s Mission to non-Christian lands." 

" Tintagel, Cornwall, October 18, 1894. 

" Here we are, and have been since Monday, in 
the quietest, freshest retreat possible, in small but 
very comfortable lodgings after all the incessant 
press of last Congress week. We cannot be really 
thankful enough for the wonderful blessing which 
seemed to rest on every day s work from the 7th 
to the 14th, inclusive. Surely God heard and 
answered our prayers. Of course, in so large and 
free an outpouring of so many minds and hearts, 
there were things said, which, to use Coleridge s 
words, did not find me. But there was no 
bitterness, except there was a groan or two in 
* Father Ignatius reply to Professor Driver which 
I did not hear. Still I am sure it was wiser 
to let him speak (and told Bishop Barry, who was 



EXETER 87 

chairman, so before hand), and, viewing the Con 
gress as a whole, there was a noble testimony to 
the truth. 

" The Friday morning devotional service in the 
Cathedral, when Professor Swete, the Rev. W. H. 
Hutchings, and H. E. Fox (Durham), and the 
Bishop of Truro, gave four addresses with a hymn 
and collects between each, all bearing on * The 
Doctrine and Dispensation of the Holy Spirit, was 
to my mind the most delightful of all, and I can 
only pray that the whole Congress may be a 
spiritual epoch to myself in the late evening of 
my ministry." 

From the home of one who had lately lost her 
husband, he writes to his daughter 

" November 22, 1894. 

" I have been telling her of the ever- widening 
circles of noble Christian ambition. 

" (1) Our own walk with God. 

" (2) Our home circle trained for God. 

" (3) Our parish, the spot where He has placed 
us to be worked for Him. 

" (4) Our Diocese, some special field chosen to 
cultivate. (I think she will take our Deaconess s 
work under her influence here.) 

" (5) The great Missionary work in far-off 
lands." 

" January 15, 1895. 

" I am sure I ought to hold earth with a looser 
hand and heaven with a firmer grasp, now that 1 
am on the verge of three score years and ten. But 
I find it hard to do this in such a Paradise of 
human love as God, in His great mercy, has made 
my lot." 

"June 20, 1895. 

" On Monday and Tuesday we had the annual 
gathering of the Diocesan Missionaries in the 



88 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Cathedral, and at Canon Atherton s house and 
garden ; they numbered 60. Nine years ago, I 
said that of our 750 Clergymen in this Diocese, we 
might find one in ten capable of being Missioners, 
if they would stir up the gift of God which was in 
them. That would number 75, but it is a great 
mercy to have 60, or four-fifths of my asked-for 
fellow- workers. " 

"August 1, 1895. 

" My great sorrow since 1 wrote has been the 
death of my dear, dear friend and brother, Bishop 
Thorold. For nearly forty years we have been 
friends, and now that he and dear French are gone, 
I feel more and more what a band of brothers are 
gathering on the other side of Jordan. Oh to be 
ready when the Master calls ! " 

He writes on the death of his sister Charlotte, 
Mrs. Ward : 

"September 15, 1896. 

" Last Wednesday I was by my precious sister. 
It was a singular, and to me most tender mercy, 
that she was conscious, and not only knew me, but 
took intense pleasure in my having come. I was 
indeed thankful to have been permitted to spend 
her last conscious hour of pilgrimage with her. 
It is 37 years since death entered my father s 
circle, my mother having passed away in 1859, and 
I am the oldest survivor of that generation." 

Bishop Bickersteth took an active part in the 
proceedings of the Lambeth Conference in the 
early summer of 1897. He served as a member of 
Committees which were appointed to discuss and 
report upon questions bearing upon the Missionary 



EXETER 89 

Work of the Church, and the Observance of 
Sunday. 1 

Bishop Edward Bickersteth had returned home 
in broken health early in the year 1897. A partial 
recovery enabled him to take part, together with 
his father, in the Conference of Bishops, but a 
relapse took place, and the call to rest came on 
August 5th, just after the close of the Conference. 2 
This heavy stroke was received by the Bishop with 
a submission to the will of God and a Christian 
patience which all who knew him felt beforehand 
that he would exhibit. He had all the consola 
tion which widespread sympathy and many prayers 
could minister ; and meanwhile, he continued 
"steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the 
work of the Lord." He never entirely recovered 
the spring and the buoyancy of the past ; it was 
manifest that the blow had told heavily upon him. 

The Palace at Exeter occupies an ideal site, 
nestling as it does under the shadow of the 
Cathedral Church. Its beautiful lawns and 
gardens, its fine old elms and shady walks, its 
enclosure to the east of the ancient City wall, 
give it a wonderful charm. The mellowed chimes 
of the bells at the hour of prayer, the sense of 
stillness and retirement after the throng and bustle 
of the streets near by, the loveliness of trees and 
flowers, and the sweet singing of birds, these 
elements of repose and refreshment made their 
irresistible appeal to such a mind as the Bishop s. 

To no occasion during his life at Exeter did he 

1 See note at the close of the chapter. 2 See Appendix III. 



90 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

look back with more gratification than to the 
gracious visit paid to him there in 1886 by her 
Majesty, then Princess of Wales, and their Royal 
Highnesses the Princesses Louise, Victoria and 
Maude. The inhabitants of the ancient and loyal 
city of Exeter, were in like manner deeply touched 
and gratified by their coming in such a way. 

Some impressions of the home life at the Palace 
during those years have been contributed by one 
of the family. 1 

" It is not easy to sketch, in a few words, the 
impression which my father s life left upon his 
family during his fifteen years Bishopric. But as 
a Vicar he had taken, as a matter of course, the 
priority of parochial to private interests ; and this 
repeated itself in the wider sphere. The Palace 
was to him a trust to be used as a centre for 
hospitality, whether for gatherings of clergy and 
Church workers, or for our weekly At Homes 
and occasional dinner-parties. He took much 
interest in keeping it up, and also in the garden, in 
which he planted another tree each year : and he 
often regretted that a scheme to restore its frag 
ments of ancient cloister proved beyond his means. 

"We did not often go with him in his visits 
about the Diocese, but from time to time pro 
minent laymen stayed with us ; and the fact was 
probably known to them that his life was one of 
work, unbroken except by his love of home, and 
by time reserved in his summer holiday for literary 
ventures. 

" He was often away for Sunday work, but when 
at home he never missed reading us The Chris 
tian Year and his own poems for the day From 

1 Miss M. Bickersteth. 



EXETER 91 

Year to Year : nor, whatever visitor might be 
present, did he fail to offer a prayer for the absent 
members of the family, and to claim the singing 
of favourite hymns before Cathedral Evensong. 

" He was never a leader in Church politics at 
Bishops Meetings or in Convocation ; but he had 
trained his mind in secular politics from boyhood 
by study of the Times, and on his return from 
London he would give us resumes of the trend of 
affairs, which were marked by his natural shrewd 
ness. His deep love of the Church and her pro 
gress left him untrammelled, as outsiders have 
noted, by party considerations. He saw also where 
the Diocese would gain, by a share in the increased 
centralization and common action of modern Church 
life. He grasped that the Archbishop was " Primus 
inter Pares," but he responded to his lead with 
enthusiastic loyalty. He trusted us ever to re 
gard his official interests, and trust was the essence 
of his nature. 

"At home his will was law, and touched by the 
strictness of the early Evangelicals. His study was 
reserved for work, except when we met after 
evening Chapel, or when invaded by grand 
children ; and in the earlier days he would return 
thither for work, even after dinner. 

" His musical perception was keen, while his 
knowledge of music was limited. He talked very 
little of spiritual matters, and left us free as to 
personal development, but the impression he gave 
us in daily life was one of sunny faith, won, as he 
would tell us, by doubts and struggles in early 
manhood, which he thought had left no part of the 
battle-field he did not know. He would never 
give us his judgment in a hurry, but say instead, 
I will pray it over and think it over, though it 
might mean a delay of many days. His gentleness 
was self-evident, but it was the outcome of control 



92 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of a quick temper, and it was known in the house 
hold that his early rising did not mean extra work, 
but time reserved for devotion before the day s 
duties. His usual freedom in expressing affection, 
veiled a reserve as to the deep sorrows and per 
plexities of life, which he allowed few to penetrate. 
But he met them e.g. the death of his son, the 
Bishop of South Tokyo with a submission to the 
will of God we shall never forget. If I can serve 
Christ in London, he said to me just before his 
resignation, then I must not think of completing 
my sixteen years here ; and the motto he had 
carved above his study mantelpiece, surrounded 
by pictures of Trinity College, Cambridge ; Christ 
Church, Hampstead; Norwich, Gloucester and 
Exeter Cathedrals, was Cui servire regnare. 

Early in 1898, it was resolved that a testimonial 
be presented to the Bishop by the Diocese on his 
birthday in the following January, to commemorate 
the fifteenth year of his Episcopate and the fifty- 
first of his ministry in the Church. It took the 
form of a portrait of himself, which was presented 
at a large gathering of the clergy and laity in the 
Chapter House of the Cathedral at which Arch 
deacon Sandford presided. 

The Rt. Hon. Sir John Kennaway, Bart., M.P., 
in making the presentation said : 

" We meet under happy circumstances to-day, 
in this Ever Faithful city, and within the pre 
cincts of our grand Cathedral. Exeter has not 
always been the abode of peace and happiness. 
History tells us of the sieges undergone, of the 
excitement of Royal visits ; and, like other cities, 
Exeter has witnessed the growth of different 



EXETER 93 

parties, civil and religious, in her midst, with rival 
powers, conflicting jurisdiction, claims of obnoxious 
privileges and the right of sanctuary, bringing 
about strained relations between the Guildhall and 
the Chapter, verging almost upon civil war. I 
take it that the presence of the Mayor to-day is 
a sign that these times are past, and that harmony, 
peace, and good fellowship now exist between the 
city and the Chapter. 

" Exeter has on its roll of Bishops many familiar 
names of great men who have occupied this See, 
great and brilliant statesmen, administrators, com 
mentators, and translators of the Bible, and master 
builders. I am not sure whether there are any 
warriors among them. Walter Bronescombe, Peter 
Quivil, Stapledon, Grandison, Trelawney, Buller, 
and Courtenay are men in the past, who have left 
great names behind them. Some of us can still 
remember, in our own times, the powerful and 
acute intellect of Henry Phillpotts, while the force, 
the energy, the fire, and the strength of Frederick 
Temple are sufficiently in our memories. 

" You, my Lord, the son of a large-hearted and 
devoted father, who practically gave his life to the 
Church Missionary Society, came among us with 
a different training, with the experience of a large 
metropolitan parish, as a commentator of know 
ledge and research, a poet whose name is dear, and 
who has brought comfort to thousands on either 
side of the Atlantic. You have won our hearts by 
loving sympathy, by a generous and far-reaching 
hospitality, by an encouragement given to Church 
workers of all grades of the Diocese, by a desire 
to draw closer to us our Nonconformist brethren, 
by a recognition of the claims of our soldiers and 
sailors to Church work and Church sympathy, and 
also by the prominence you have given to the 
missionary cause in this Diocese, a cause which the 



94 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

recent Lambeth Conference acknowledged to be 
the most important committed to the Church. It 
was felt that the fiftieth year of your ministry, and 
the fourteenth of your episcopate, should not be 
allowed to pass by without there being secured to 
us some memory of what you have been and what 
you are a permanent abiding memorial. 

" The times are changed in regard to the 
episcopal office. It used to be said that the 
Bishop could only come into his Cathedral city 
from a far-off palace in a coach and four. Now 
railways and the march of modern ideas have 
changed all that. But we do form very high ideas 
of the episcopal office, and we certainly make very 
great demands upon it. We expect the Bishop to 
take part in all the varied forms of our modern 
Church life, to be acquainted with every corner 
of his Diocese ; we expect him to restrain, to 
stimulate, to encourage, and to counsel. Nor are 
these all. We are passing through, it may be, 
critical and perilous times, and duties and responsi 
bilities rest upon the Bishops in regard to them. 
We do not desire in these times to invoke the 
assistance of law or Parliament. We look to you, 
my Lord, and to your brethren as our leaders. We 
would render to you obedience. We would give 
you an assurance of our hearty support in defend 
ing the rights of the Church, in maintaining her 
discipline and doctrine. 

" We thank God for the age in which we live, 
for never has the Church done her duty so well, 
never has she been so firmly rooted in the affec 
tions of the English people. And we earnestly 
pray that now, in these our days, God will defend 
His Church, and, as we have received it from our 
forefathers, in its beauty and purity Catholic, 
Apostolic, and Protestant so we pray that we 
may be enabled to hand it down to those that 



EXETER 95 

come after us, in a way that will show that we 
have been worthy of the great trust committed 
to us. 

" My Lord, we now propose to present this 
picture to the Diocese, but there will be a replica of 
it for Mrs. Bickersteth. The work of preparing 
and organizing this presentation has been a work of 
love. The response that we had to the invitations 
sent out has been from beginning to end most 
gratifying. We earnestly hope that this picture 
will be treasured and valued by you and your 
family, and that it will remain among us as a 
stimulus to encourage us and all Church workers 
in the Diocese, to do and to attempt great things 
for God and His Church. I have pleasure in 
presenting you, my Lord, with this book containing 
a brief account of the steps which led up to the 
painting of this likeness, together with the book of 
subscribers." 

The Bishop in returning thanks said : 

"Dear Archdeacon of Exeter, dear Sir John 
Kennaway, and all my brethren of the clergy and 
laity. A circular which was signed by thirty 
eminent laymen and forty eminent clergymen 
(almost all of our Diocese), fell into my hands last 
spring. They proposed to mark the completion of 
my then half-century of ministerial work by asking 
me to sit for my portrait, which when painted, 
should be hung in the Palace hall among those 
of my predecessors. Their far too generous testi 
mony borne to my pastoral and episcopal labours, 
make my heart tremble and my cheek blush to 
think of my countless shortcomings in the irrevoc 
able past, for when I read it I could only take shelter 
in the Psalmist s prayer, Enter not into judgment 
with Thy servant, O Lord ; for in Thy sight shall 



96 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

no man living be justified. And then I had 
always hitherto declined to have my portrait 
painted, for I felt time was priceless, and photo 
graphs would suffice. But I could not, I dared 
not, refuse the wish of so many friends, when it 
was pressed upon me by men whom I have revered 
and loved so long. So here I am before you 
to-day, my brothers and sisters in Christ, to thank 
you with a full heart for the portrait which you 
have so kindly combined to present to the See 
of Exeter, and not only so, itself the forerunner of 
a replica, which you have thoughtfully provided to 
give my family as an heirloom when I am no longer 
among them. 

" It is, indeed, to me a most humbling thought 
the being enlinked to such an historic chain of 
Bishops of Exeter (myself the sixty-second Bishop) 
from Leofric, who was installed by King Edward 
the Confessor and Editha his wife, in the year 
1050 ; a chain now stretching on and on through 
more than eight centuries of the Church s warfare 
and witness for the truth ; a chain which embraces 
such indefatigable builder Bishops if I may so call 
them as Warelwast, to whom we are indebted for 
the two Norman towers of our Cathedral, and to 
Marshall at the close of the twelfth century, and 
Bronescombe, Quivil, Stapledon, and the noble 
Grandison, and others toiling from 1258 to 1370 
A.D. ; a chain also embracing the glorious Reforma 
tion era. And of these Bishops let me select 
Myles Coverdale, to whose translation of the 
Bible England owes much, and the saintly Joseph 
Hall from 1627 to 1641, and I must include 
(for it is a watchword in the West of England), 
Trelawney, who was one of the seven Bishops im 
prisoned in the year 1688, and who that same year 
was translated from Bristol and enthroned in our 
Cathedral. Time forbids my touching on other 



EXETER 97 

names, save one still with us, who crowns our 
group, Archbishop Temple, but we may all pray to 
tread in their footprints so far as they trod in the 
steps of our Lord and Master. 

" I received yesterday morning the kindest letter 
from Lord Clinton, who writes to me. To my 
very great regret, I am compelled to give up my 
engagement to present to you your portrait on 
behalf of the subscribers ; but my London doctor 
positively orders complete rest. God grant he may 
soon be restored to perfect health, for he is one of 
the pillars of England s Church in our Diocese. 
Lord Clinton goes on to speak of the difficulties 
and anxieties which beset us at the present time. 
But, as I have often said in public, there are, I 
believe, very few Churchmen in our happy Diocese 
who are not loyal to their Mother Church. Is 
it too presumptuous to say that the occasion on 
which we meet this afternoon is, in itself, one 
testimony among many others, that clergy and 
laity are closely knit together, and that both 
look upon their Bishop without any mistrust or 
suspicion ? They surely must trust him as he 
trusts them, or why do they care to perpetuate any 
reminiscence of their Bishop by a costly portrait ? 
Confiding leads to confidence ; trust begets trust 
worthiness. As Keble says : 

* Sweet is the smile of home, the mutual look, 
Where hearts are of each other sure. 

We feel at home one with another. If there are 
any wandering sheep or lambs, true shepherds seek 
till they find the wanderers, and bring them back to 
the fold, and feed them in green pastures and by 
the waters of quietness. And you know well that 
your Bishop, supported by his beloved Suffragan 
Bishop, and his trusted Archdeacons and Canons, 
and Rural - Deans, and Chaplains, and fellow- 
labourers, both lay and clerical, would never resort 

H 



98 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

to the Courts of Law unless absolutely duty-bound 
and conscience-bound, but would desire as your 
father in God, only to hold the pastoral staff, 
which is but another name and form and office of 
the shepherd s crook." 

The portrait is a three-quarter length picture in 
oil colours, by Mr. A. Cope, the celebrated portrait 
painter. The Bishop is represented in his Convo 
cation robes, and is sitting as many will recall 
him with his head resting upon his hand. It 
is undoubtedly a faithful picture, the only point on 
which criticism has been offered being that the 
mouth is somewhat rigid. The Convocation robes 
have afforded the artist the opportunity of putting 
a considerable amount of colour into the portrait, 
and this he has managed extremely well. 

NOTE. This letter from his old friend the Bishop of Durham (Dr. 
Westcott), was written just after the Lambeth Conference, and on the 
eve of the death of Bishop Edward Bickersteth. It is pathetic as 
expressing hopes which were destined to be speedily disappointed : 

"Auckland Castle, Bishop Auckland, August 3, 1897: 
"My DEAR BROTHER, 

" It is most kind of you to send me a memorial of the Con 
ference. I possess the book already, with a more special inscription, 
and I can therefore send this copy to our elder missionary son, Arthur 
(at Madras), who is a great student of hymns, and will value it greatly. 
" You can imagine how great a disappointment it was to me not to 
be able to meet the brethren face to face, but the doctor s orders 
were peremptory, and I could not but recognize that they were right. 
My breakdown was complete. However, I shall be able to leave 
home to-morrow, and I am assured that if I can take a complete rest 
(How can I?) till the end of September, I shall recover my usual 
strength. 

" I was very sorry to hear what you tell me of your son Edward. 
Will you give him my affectionate remembrances ? The winter will, I 
trust, fully restore him. I can imagine how you have suffered from 
the heat at Lambeth. You will, I hope, have a refreshing summer. 

" Yours affectionately, 

"B. F. DUNELM." 



CHAPTER VI 

1848-1900 

Literary work " Yesterday, To-day and For Ever " Analysis of the 
Poem Its Reception Other Verse The Hymnal Companion Its 
Characteristics The Bishop on Hymnology es From Year to Year" 
e Peace, perfect Peace " Commentary on the New Testament 
The "Rock of Ages" "The Spirit of Life" "The Master s 
Home Call" "The Shadowed Home" "The Feast of Divine 
Love " " Thoughts in Past Years." 

" He touched his harp and nations heard entranced." 

POLLOCK. 

" Et fortassis inveniet pius pulsator quod temerarius scrutator non 
posset." ST. BERNARD, " Sermons on Canticles," xxvi. 1 

BISHOP BICKERSTETH S retirement from active work 
towards the close of the year 1900, will afford a 
convenient break for the purposes of a review of 
his literary and missionary labours, which will be 
given in this and the succeeding chapter. 

His most famous writings were his poems, and 
the Hymnal Companion to the Book of Common 
Prayer which he compiled. Though the author 
of a large number of theological and devotional 
works, some of which had an immense circulation, 
to his contemporaries he was most widely known 
and admired as a religious poet. He was recog 
nized as being one of the sweet singers of the 

1 The sense of these words may thus be paraphrased. f He who 
knocks reverently at the door will, perchance, find what the rash 
investigator must seek in vain." St. Bernard is speaking of the spirit 
in which the study of Holy Scripture should be undertaken. 

99 



100 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Israel of God in his day, and whilst his poetry 
appealed most powerfully to the Protestant element 
in Anglo-Saxon Christendom, there were those in 
the Roman Catholic Church who were attracted 
by it, as will appear from the letter of John Henry 
Newman on the poem, "Yesterday, To-day and 
For Ever." 

It is not easy to differentiate Bishop Bicker- 
steth s verse. It has no single quality which may 
not be found in greater degree in the poetry of 
" The grand old Masters and the Bards sublime," 
though in many passages he approaches very nearly 
to; them. Imagination and pathos, solemnity and 
sublimity, simplicity and strength, sweetness and 
tenderness, deftness and delicacy of touch, he has 
these elements of true poetic power in a very high 
degree. But there is something besides, which 
gives his poetry its chief characteristic. It is 
pervaded, as it were, by a luminous ether of 
spirituality and heavenly-mindedness, which he 
derived from a close walk with God. 

The publication of " Yesterday, To-day and 
For Ever " in 1866, at once brought his name 
before a world-wide circle of readers. He thus 
describes the motif of the book in his prefatory 
note : 

" The design of the following poem has been 
laid up in my heart for more than twenty years. 
Other claims, however, prevented me from seriously 
undertaking the work until little more than two 
years ago. But then the deep conviction that 
those solemn events, to which the latter books of 
my poem relate, were already beginning to cast 



LITERARY 101 

their prophetic lights and shadows upon the world, 
constrained me to make the attempt. If it may 
please God to awaken any minds to deeper, thoughts 
on things unseen and eternal by this humble effort 
to combine some of the pictorial teaching supplied 
by His most Holy Word, it will be the answer 
to many prayers." 

The boldness of such an attempt was startling, 
whilst the sustained ease, the buoyancy and strength 
with which the author maintained his flight and 
soared aloft in regions of thought, hitherto visited 
but by few poets, were still more surprising. Not 
many have been found to venture upon a pre 
serve which had come to be regarded as belonging 
exclusively to Dante and Milton. 

The mind of the writer of " Yesterday, To-day 
and For Ever" had indeed been steeped in the 
writings of these immortal Christian poets ; it 
had learned to fly, as it were, under their wing. 
But it is clear to his readers that Holy Scripture, 
read, studied, meditated upon, and interwoven into 
the very texture of his thought, was the great 
reservoir from which he drew his inspiration. 
Some of his critics have pointed out that in 
respect of the inwardness of his knowledge of the 
sacred writings, he more than rivalled his immortal 
precursors. However this may be, he came and 
went at will in realms which they had made their 
own. He was free of that celestial country, which 
he explored at will, and wherein he felt too much 
at home to confine himself to the tracks which 
they had opened before him. 

The scope and range of the poem can only be 



102 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

briefly indicated here. It will be necessary for 
such a purpose to quote at length a few passages, 
which would suffer from compression. These are 
difficult to select amidst a profusion which is 
bewildering and which reminds one of Sinbad 
in the valley of diamonds. The poem consists 
of twelve books, the subjects of which are as 
follows : 

I. The Seer s Death and Descent into Hades. 
II. The Paradise of the Blessed Dead. III. The 
Prison of the Lost. IV. The Creation of Angels 
and Men. V. The Fall of Angels and of Men. 
VI. The Empire of Darkness. VII. Redemption. 
VIII. The Church Militant. IX. The Bridal of 
the Lamb. X. The Millenial Sabbath. XI. The 
Last Judgment. XII. The Many Mansions. 

A short account of each Book will be given 
with references and occasional extracts. 

The first Book tells of the Seer s own death 
and descent into Hades, an introduction to the 
great subject of the poem which was confessedly 
unique. The call to leave the world, the account 
of what he felt when it came, the farewells to his 
family and his last prayer for them, are very 
striking 

" I whispered to my wife, f The time is short, 
I hear the Spirit and the Bride say " Come," 
And Jesus answering, "I come quickly." Listen ! 
And as she wiped the death-dews from my brow. 
She falter d, e He is very near/ and I 
Could only faintly say, Amen, amen, 
And then my power of utterance was gone : 
I beckoned and was speechless : I was more 
Than ankle deep in Jordan s icy stream. 
My children stood upon its utmost verge, 



LITERARY 103 

Gazing imploringly, persuasively, 

While the words, Dear, dear father, now and then 

Would drop, like dew, from their unconscious lips, 

My gentle wife, with love stronger than death, 

Was leaning over those cold gliding waves, 

I heard them speaking, but could make no sign ; 

I saw them weeping, but could shed no tear ; 

I felt their touch upon my flickering pulse, 

Their breath upon my cheek, but I could give 

No answering pressure to the fond hands pressed 

In mine. So rapidly the river bed 

Shelved downward. I had passed or almost passed 

Beyond the interchange of loving signs 

Into the very world of love itself. 

The waters were about my knees ; they washed 

My loins ; and still they deepen d. Unawares 

I saw, I listened who is He who speaks ? 

A Presence and a Voice. That Presence moved 

Beside me like a cloud of glory ; and 

That voice was like a silver trumpet saying, 

Be of good comfort. It is I. Fear not ! 

And whether now the waters were less deep, 

Or I was borne upon invisible arms, 

I know not ; but methought my mortal robes 

Now only brushed the smoothly gliding stream, 

And like the edges of a sunset cloud 

The beatific land before me lay. 

One long last look behind me ; gradually 

The figures faded on the shore of time, 

And as the passing bell of midnight struck, 

One sob, one effort and my spirit was free." 

(Book I. 364-405.) 



A few lines further on, Oriel his guardian angel 
is thus introduced 

" Brother, thou art by my side, 
By me thy guardian angel, who have watch d 
Thy footsteps from the wicket gate of life, 
And now am here to tend thy pathway home." 

As the passage describing the Seer s departure 
from earth has been quoted, a few lines telling 



104 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of his welcome in Paradise should also be 
given 

" Welcome to heaven, dear brother, welcome home ! 
Welcome to thy inheritance of light ! 
Welcome for ever to thy Master s joy ! 
Thy work is done, thy pilgrimage is past ; 
Thy guardian angel s vigil is fulfill d ; 
Thy parents wait thee in the howers of bliss ; 
Thy infant babes have woven wreaths for thee ; 
Thy brethren who have entered into rest 
Long for thy coming ; and the angel choirs 
Are ready with their symphonies of praise. 
Nor shall thy voice be mute : a golden harp 
For thee is hanging on the trees of life ; 
And sweetly shall its chords for ever ring, 
Responsive to thy touch of ecstasy, 
With hallelujahs to thy Lord and ours." 

(Book I. 846-860). 

In Book II. the Seer under the conduct of 
Oriel, descends into the lower world, and at length 
reaches Paradise, where the climax is reached in 
lines full of pathos, which describe the Seer s 
meeting with his Divine Master, Christ the Lord. 

"And as I spake/ etc. (II. 150-202). 

Then he tells with great beauty of his greeting 
with " those loved long since and lost awhile," his 
children who had died in infancy, his parents, 
members of his flock, and others. And here he 
broaches the novel view that such as die as babes 
continue to be 

"... babes of light 
In God s great household. 
A babe in glory is a babe for ever. 

The thought is worked out in detail with much 
grace and ingenuity. 



LITERARY 105 

Book III. carries the Seer to the prison of the 
Lost, which is visible from the uttermost border 
of Paradise. The descriptions are powerful and 
vivid. Oriel tells of three visits which he had 
made as " the Guardian of lost Souls to that dual 
realm." One incident, that of Theodore, a youth 
in the days of Constantine the Great who had 
apostatized in order to win a heathen bride and 
had died impenitent, is narrated with great dramatic 
force and realism. 

When Theodore asks Oriel to tell Irene of his 
doom and warn her to repent, and also to comfort 
his mother who may be searching for him in 
Paradise, the angel replies in accents of mingled 
sorrow and reproof (Book III. 685-698). 

Book IV. treats of the creation of angels and 
men which Oriel recounts to his ward. It opens 
with an apostrophe to tears, which is a gem of 
beauty but too long to quote. The Seer had been 
overcome with grief at the scenes which he had 
witnessed in the prison house of the Lost. He 
says : 

" Yes, there are tears in heaven ; love ever breathes 
Compassion ; and compassion without tears 
Would lack its truest utterance : saints weep 
And angels : there no bitterness 
Troubles the crystal spring." 

(Book IV. 65-69.) 

Oriel accedes to his request that he might hear 
from his lips the story of Creation. He shows how 
God created angels and men with the awful pre 
rogative of free will. The angels were warned 
that their trial would come (Book IV. 472-481, 
493-496). 



106 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

The Book concludes with the story of man s 
creation, his introduction into Paradise, and the 
charge given him to be steadfast in obedience. 

In Book V. the catastrophe of the Fall is por 
trayed, and here is perhaps the most original of all 
the poet s conceptions. He holds that the fall of 
the angels and of man was all but contemporaneous. 
Man in his planet home was committed to the over 
sight of the loftiest of created spirits, "Lucifer, 
Son of the Morning." His attempts to seduce the 
angels from their allegiance are narrated with much 
vigour, and Oriel tells how he was deputed, with a 
band of angelic warriors, to guard mankind s first 
parents from all ghostly violence 

" Other temptations, warned, themselves must shun." 

The Fall of Man is treated with much force 
and freshness. The serpent decoys Adam away 
from Eve, and so gains access to her for the accom 
plishment of his fell design. The rest of the story 
traverses ground which is familiar to the reader of 
Milton. Adam is represented as saying 

"Both cannot live, and therefore both must die, 
So saying, from her hand he took and ate, 
Not circumvented by the serpent s fraud 
But blindly overcome by human love, 
Love s semblance which belied its name, denying 
The great Creator for the creature s sake." 

(Book V. 525-530.) 

Book VI. continues the thread of Oriel s story 
in which is described the progress of the Empire 
of Darkness. The plottings and machinations of 
Satan, his malice with the apparent success which 
attended it, during the weary ages between the 



LITERARY 107 

Fall and the First Advent, are depicted with an 
animation that bears the reader along with 
unflagging interest. 

One, among many instances of the writer s un 
conventional treatment of well-worn subjects, is 
the Speech of Mammon, Milton s "least erected 
spirit of all that fell" in the synod of the Apostate 
Angels. The passage begins thus 

" I too have poised the heart of man, and watched 
With sleepless eye what avenue may best 
Yield us access. And here I answer, Gold. 
Smile not that yellow dust should have such power ; 
For what is Man hut dust ? What marvel then 
Dust over dust holds sway ? " 

(Book VI. 240-245.) 

The next Book (VII.) begins the story of Re 
demption, which is ushered in by Gabriel appearing 
to Oriel, as he mused over the prophet s words, 
" Watchman, what of the night ? " and saying 
to him 

" . . . Brother, 

The morning cometh, and the night : beyond 
All is unclouded everlasting day. 
This very hour the Sun of Righteousness 
Peers o er the horizon, Virgin-born to-night 
Within the crowded gates of Bethlehem 
A Babe, who owns no human sire, is lying 
Upon His mother s bosom." 

(Book VII. 64-71.) 

The earthly life of the Incarnate Son is sketched 
in words from which the task of selection is diffi 
cult, but the devout reader will scan them with 
delight. A glorious climax is reached in the 
description of the Lord s Ascension into heaven, 
and His royal progress to the right hand of the 
Majesty on High (Book VII. 1008-1108). 



108 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

In Book VIII. the author conceives that the 
conflicts of the Church on earth have had their 
counterpart in heaven, basing his view on Rev. xii. 
7-12, and that this warfare takes place, not as with 
Milton before the creation of man, but after the 
Ascension of Christ. The fortresses of Satan are 
stormed by the celestial hosts, and the Devil and 
his angels are cast down to hell. A very fine 
description is that of the martyrdom of Perpetua 
(lines 218-250),and the author, unlike Milton, makes 
the holy angels liable to wounds, Oriel himself 
receiving a scar (Ibid. 490-503.) 

The subject of Book IX. is the Bridal of the 
Lamb, which is ushered in by the trumpet of the 
Archangel, when the dead in Christ are raised. 
The spirits of the blest are gathered in one great 
multitude, clothed in their glorified bodies, whilst 
those who are alive and remain on the earth, are 
caught up to meet them in the air. The reception 
of the Bride is set forth in a passage of great 
beauty, ending with the words 

" Wife of the Lamb, known only by His name : 
Oh finite image of the Infinite : 
Oh holy creaturehood, perfect at last : 
Oh true Self raised to true unselfishness, 
Living for Him alone, who is thy life, 
All and in all for Him, as He for God." 

(Book IX. 490-495.) 

The increase of bliss to the redeemed, when 
clothed upon with their glorified bodies, is couched 
in striking couplets 

" These bodies of our glory could sustain 
More of His glory than the naked spirit ; 
Our pure affections His affections clasped ; 
And every power within us had some hold 



LITERARY 109 

On His Omnipotence. Like imaged like, 

And, as with us, so was it with the rest : 

To all a vast promotion of their bliss, 

To each the increase, as each sowed on earth. 

Love only can know love. And as they loved 

They knew Him. As they knew Him, they returned 

His lineaments of beatific light : 

So glory is proportionate to grace. 

(Book IX. 556-567). 

In Book X. the author is on ground of all others 
the most debatable. He belonged to a school of 
thought in the Church which has had its repre 
sentatives from very early times, and which holds 
that the first resurrection will usher in the visible 
reign of Christ upon the earth for a thousand years. 
Though perhaps the great number of those who 
read the poem will not see their way clear to a 
belief in the Premillenial Advent and Personal 
Reign of Christ on this earth, they cannot but 
follow the course of the poem with admiration 
and sympathy. The book begins with a beautiful 
description of the earthly Sabbath, the type and 
pledge of the Millenial. Some who have not 
present access to the poem may be glad to read 
it here 

" A Sabbath morn softly the village bells 
Ring out their welcome to the sacred day. 
The weary swain has drunk of longer sleep, 
And now, his children clustering round him, leads 
The happy group from under his low porch 
And through the little garden, where each plucks 
A rose or pansy, to the school they love : 
The busy hum delights his ear : and soon 
The morning hymn floats heavenward ; but himself, 
Holding the youngest prattler in his arms, 
Waits in the churchyard, where about him lie 
His father, and his father s fathers, till, 
The children following in their pastor s steps 
Whose grey locks flutter in the summer breeze, 



110 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

All pass beneath the hallowed roof, and all 

Kneeling, where generations past have knelt, 

Pour forth their common wants in common prayer. 

A rural Sabbath nearest type of heaven ; 

Yet scarcely less beloved in toil-worn courts 

And alleys of the city. What true heart 

Loves not the Sabbath ? that dear pledge of home ; 

That trysting place of God and man ; that link 

Betwixt a near eternity and time ; 

That almost lonely rivulet, which flows 

From Eden through the world s wide waste of sand 

Unchecked, and though not unalloyed with earth 

Its healing water all impregned with life, 

The life of their first blessing, to pure lips 

The memory of a bygone Paradise, 

The earnest of a Paradise to come. 

Who know thee best, love best, thou pearl of days, 

And guard thee with most jealous care from morn 

Till dewy evening, when the ceaseless play 

Hour after hour of thy sweet influences 

Has turned the heart of pilgrims to the songs 

And music of their heavenly fatherland. 

But mortal ears are heavy, and mortal eyes 

Catch only glimpses dim and indistinct 

Of things unseen, beauteous but far away ; 

Enough to quicken, but not satiate love ; 

And the soon weary spirit exhausted sighs 

For wings to fly away, and be at rest, 

Or solaces its musings, there remains 

A Sabbath for the toiling Church of God." 

(Book X. 1-44.) 

The portraiture of the Messiah reigning in 
Jerusalem is also of surpassing beauty. It begins, 
" The voice of the Lord is on the waters " (Book X. 
320-348). 

In Book XI. the subject of the Last Judgment 
is set forth with much impressiveness. The evil 
angels are loosed, and there comes the final con 
flict, with the utter overthrow of the Powers of 
Darkness. Next, the fallen spirits and the souls 
of all mankind are brought to the Great White 



LITERARY 111 

Throne to hear their doom. The redeemed receive 
their crowns amidst the rejoicings of the heavenly 
company. 

The lines which describe the sentence pro 
nounced upon the arch-tempter (680-702) and 
the judgment of the lost, are most solemn and 
pathetic. 

And finally, in Book XII., the author is upon 
ground hitherto all but untrodden, and where he 
exercises the whole array of his powers. His theme 
is the state of the earth after the final judgment, 
together with the Heavenly Zion and its many 
mansions, the coronation of the Bridegroom, the 
glories and pursuits of the blessed, and he treats 
it throughout with the utmost reverence, even 
where the flights of his imagination are boldest 
The poem closes with a passage equal in tenderness 
and sublimity to any which have preceded it 

" Such are the many kingdoms of God s realm ; 
And in these boundless provinces of light 
We who once suffered with a suffering Lord 
Reign with Him in His glory, unto each 
According to his power and proven love 
His rule assign d. But Zion is our home ; 
Jerusalem, the city of our God. 
O happy home ! O happy children here ! 
O blissfurmansions of our Father s house ! 
O walks surpassing Eden for delight ! 
Here are the harvests reap d once sown in tears : 
Here is the rest by ministry enhanced : 
Here is the banquet of the wine of heaven, 
Riches of glory incorruptible, 
Crowns, amaranthine crowns of victory, 
The voice of harpers harping on their harps, 
The anthems of the holy cherubim, 
The crystal river of the Spirit s joy, 
The Bridal palace of the Prince of Peace, 
The Holiest of Holies God is here." 



EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

The poem has had from the outset an immense 
circulation, upwards of 27,000 copies of it having 
been sold in England and more than 50,000 in 
America. It will have a distinct value for students 
of the religious life of its time because of the wide 
spread influence which it has exerted, even if it 
should not find any considerable number of readers 
in the future. Vaticinations as to literary longevity 
are very precarious. The author continued to 
receive testimonies to the helpfulness of the book 
up to the close of his life. In 1872 he was per 
mitted to know that selections from the poem had 
been read aloud by the Queen, then Princess of 
Wales, at the bedside of the King while he was 
recovering from the serious illness which had caused 
such wide-spread anxiety throughout the country. 

As might be expected, there were many 
criticisms both adverse and favourable, but the 
one of most general interest will be found in a 
letter from John Henry Newman, with whom the 
author had been in correspondence, and to whom 
he had sent a copy of his book : 

"The Oratory, July 11, 1874. 

"My DEAR SIR, 

" I should have thanked you for the gift 
of your volume before this, had I not been away 
from this place, and without the opportunity of 
reading it. 

" I will not say even now that I have read it 
through, for you may easily conceive that there 
are portions of it which are too distressing to me, 
and too sadly recall to my mind my own thoughts 
when I stood where you stand, to allow me calmly 
to dwell upon them ; but I gladly bear witness to 



LITERARY 113 

the imagination, the powers of language and easy 
eloquence, and the beautiful spirit which are cha 
racteristics of your poem as a whole ; and I can but 
bow before the great mystery, that those are divided 
here and look for the means of grace and glory in 
such different directions, who have so much in 
common in faith and hope. 
" I am, Dear Sir, 

" With much respect, 

" Most truly yours, 

"JOHN H. NEWMAN." 

The poetic taste of Bishop Bickersteth qualified 
him pre-eminently for work in the field of 
Hymnology. This he began in 1858 when he 
brought out a book entitled " Psalms and Hymns 
based on the Christian Psalmody of the late Rev. 
Edward Bickersteth, Rector of Watton, Herts." 
In 1870 he issued a new book " The Hymnal 
Companion to the Book of Common Prayer." 
He writes 

"If I might humbly take up, though with 
most unequal hands, the mantle which fell 
from my beloved father, and, aided by very many 
appliances not in existence forty years ago, but 
now at the service of every editor, if it might thus 
be permitted me in any way to advance a cause 
which he had so much at heart, and which is so 
intimately bound up with the spiritual life of the 
Church, I should esteem it one of the greatest 
mercies of my ministry." 

He brought out a third edition of the 
Hymnal Companion twenty years later, revised 
and enlarged, which is his final legacy in this 
respect to the Church. Within a few years, 

I 



114 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

like Aaron s Rod which swallowed up the rods 
of the Magicians in Egypt, it superseded the 
large number of private compilations which had 
been in use in the Evangelical parishes of England. 
Up to the present time it has kept the lead 
then taken. But in the year 1866, Hymns 
Ancient and Modern had been published, a book 
which appealed in a remarkable way to much of 
the Churchmanship of the day, and which had 
a tremendous vogue. Its music too was better 
than anything which had as yet appeared. The 
Hymnal Companion was therefore at a dis 
advantage ; it found much of the ground covered 
which it might have occupied, had it been sooner 
in the field. But the Evangelical school in the 
Church adopted it almost without exception, and 
its circulation has been very large. It differs from 
Hymns Ancient and Modern in its larger proportion 
of subjective hymns, and also in its sacramental 
hymns which aim at a more moderate expression 
of Eucharistic doctrine. 

The Editor of the Hymnal Companion to 
the Book of Common Prayer was happy in the 
choice of a title. It is literally a companion to 
the Prayer-book which it illustrates in verse and 
song. 

" The order of the Ecclesiastical year is observed. 
It is not, indeed, thought well to assign to every 
hymn its position under a certain Sunday or holy day, 
which seems to hamper its free use on other occasions ; 
but they are all ranged under those divisions of the 
Prayer-book with which their subjects most easily 
coalesce." 



LITERARY 115 

On one occasion it greatly amused him to 
be taken to task for placing hymns in the list at 
the beginning of the book, under the heading 
" Annunciation of our Lady." He referred his 
critic to " the Lessons Proper for Holy Days " in 
the beginning of the Prayer-book. The introduc 
tion to the Annotated Edition of the Hymnal 
Companion deals with hymnology in a way which 
is both thorough and delightful. The late Lord 
Selborne, then Sir Roundell Palmer, himself a high 
authority upon the subject, eulogized it as a master 
piece of English writing. Here again the task of a 
compiler is difficult, because there is so much which 
he would fain include in his sketch. And it is a 
pity that such a treatise should be hidden away in 
a preface, where it can only be read by the few 
whose attention is specially directed to it. The 
Editor points out that the great variety of hymnals 
in the Church of England is both a sign of vitality 
and a source of weakness. He apologizes for adding 
yet another to the already confused and confusing 
multitude of hymnals, and pleads that his compila 
tion may point the way to a solution of many 
acknowledged perplexities. He does not offer the 
simple result of his personal predilections, but a 
selection of hymns which have most widely com 
mended themselves to the Church. There follows 
next a list of the hymnals collated, about twenty- 
three in all. Many hymns embodied in Noncon 
formist hymn-books show that, amidst so much 
which tends to separate and to widen the breaches 
in the walls of Zion, this harmony of song is no 
weak bond of union. 



116 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

He speaks of the above hymnals as his "Friends 
in Council," and of having again and again modified 
his own previous decision from the effect of their 
combined or preponderating judgment. In a great 
majority of the hymns, the harmony of doctrine, he 
adds, is most remarkable, as if Christians forgot 
their differences when singing their praises to God. 
But on the other hand, if the crucial test of Sacra 
mental hymns be taken, one of the volumes he had 
mentioned contained many hymns on the Sacra 
ment of the Lord s Supper, the doctrine of which 
is hardly to be distinguished from that of Rome, while 
another did not allude to the Sacrament of Baptism. 

Again, the Prayer-book has been the constant 
standard of reference in respect of the subject- 
matter of the hymns. And the Prayer-book ever 
appeals to the Holy Scriptures as the supreme rule 
of faith. 

He then proceeds to give copious extracts from 
Lord Selborne s " Essay on Church Hymnology " 
read at the York Congress in 1868. To quote 
these, however, would not come within the scope 
of this book, admirable as they are. The Editor 
pleads for emendations in hymns such as the line 
in the last verse of Toplady s "Rock of Ages," 
" When my eyestrings crack in death," which he 
does not agree with Lord Selborne in preferring to 
the common version, " When my eyelids close in 
death." And he mentions instances where varia 
tions such as 

" Hark the herald angels sing/ 

from 

" Hark how all the welkin rings," 



LITERARY 117 

have become so stereotyped in public favour, that 
a recurrence to the original would do violence to a 
thousand associations. 

As to abridgment, he thinks that hymns of 
more than six verses should be sparingly admitted, 
but the greater rapidity with which hymns are now 
generally sung justifies larger selections. 

The Bishop was severely criticized for some 
of his additions and emendations to hymns. It 
was all but universally felt that a fourth stanza to 
"Lead, Kindly Light" was uncalled for. He 
admitted as much by its removal to an Appendix 
in the last edition of the Hymnal Companion. 

The verse had been a comfort to his daughter 
Alice at the time of her illness. He had sent a 
copy of it to Dr. Newman and also his little book 
the " Master s Home Call." In a very friendly 
correspondence with Dr. Newman the additional 
verse was discussed, and he did not gather that any 
objection was made to his use of it in the Hymnal 
Companion. 1 

The lines run as follows 

"Meantime, along the narrow, rugged path, 

Thyself has trod, 
Lead, Saviour, lead me home in childlike faith, 

Home to my God. 
To rest for ever after earthly strife 
In the calm light of everlasting life." 

The Editor thinks it would be difficult to over 
estimate the strength of the bond of union which 
a Book of Common Praise would be in these 
anxious and perilous times : but it was not then 

1 See Appendix I. 



118 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

in sight. He closes this introduction with the 
characteristic words : 

"My constant prayer has been, in preparing 
this hymnal, that no hymn, no line, no word, might 
be found in it which should grieve the Blessed 
Spirit of love who abides in His Church and 
especially inhabits the praises of His people. 
Whereinsoever I have failed, the good Lord 
pardon His servant in this thing." 

Lovers of hymnology will find much to interest 
them in the Bishop s notes on various hymns in 
the annotated edition of the Hymnal Companion. 
He tells us, for instance, that James Montgomery 
wrote the well-known hymn, " Prayer is the soul s 
sincere desire," at the request of his father, the 
Rev. Edward Bickersteth, for his "Treatise on 
Prayer." 

Allusion will be made later on to the Bishop s 
own contributions to the hymns of the Church, in 
the account of his book, "From Year to Year." 
But there is one of them which requires separate 
mention, namely, " Peace, perfect Peace," a hymn 
which appeals to the hearts of Christian people 
in a way scarcely paralleled in our generation. It 
is loved and sung by persons of all ranks and 
conditions from the palace to the cottage. It 
was said to have been a favourite of Queen 
Victoria s. The Bishop s own account of its com 
position is, in substance, as follows : He was stay 
ing with his family at Harrogate in the summer 
of 1875. One Sunday morning at the Parish 
Church, the text of the sermon was from the 
words, " Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace 



LITERARY 119 

whose mind is stayed on Thee." That afternoon 
he went for a solitary ramble on the moors, and 
when he joined his children at tea, he read them 
this hymn which he had made during his walk. 
Its popularity spread rapidly, and now no collection 
of hymns in any English Church or congregation 
would be considered complete without it. He 
delighted in the numerous testimonies which he 
received, as to the blessing and comfort which, 
by God s goodness, it had ministered to persons 
in various kinds of trouble. It has been translated 
into many languages, and the Bishop heard it sung 
in Japanese and in Chinese on his tour to the East. 

" Peace, perfect Peace " was first sung to the 
tune in Hymns Ancient and Modern composed 
by A. H. Brown to the hymn, " Draw near and 
take the body of the Lord." But it is now oftenest 
set to the tune written for it by G. F. Coldbeck, 
a student of the Church Missionary College at 
Islington. 

The Bishop published three volumes of his 
shorter poems. The first came out in 1849, and 
was dedicated to his father. It bears the title, 
" Poems by Edward Henry Bickersteth, Curate 
of Banningham, Norfolk," and includes the three 
Prize Poems which obtained the Chancellor s Medal 
at the Cambridge Commencement in the years 
1844, 1845, 1846, besides efforts of his earlier 
years. They give promise of much of the excel 
lence of his later work. His love of music comes 
out in some lines, " On the quick movement of 
Mozart s Symphony in E flat," and " On the slow 
movement of the same." 



120 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

In 1871, a second volume, "The Two Brothers 
and other Poems," was published, which reached 
a second edition by the end of the year. The 
success of " Yesterday, To-day and For Ever " had 
evidently created a demand for other poems by 
its author. Those who love graceful verse, will 
find much to charm and soothe in this collection. 
They will feel that the writer was indeed one 

" Whose songs have power to quiet 
The restless pulse of care ; 
And come like the benediction, 
That follows after prayer/ 

He was at home in Scripture subjects which 
he ^unfolded with a wealth of imagination, often 
illuminating and always reverent. The Bishop 
brought out a collection of his most characteristic 
hymns and shorter poems, finally revised and 
enlarged, in 1893, which he entitled " From Year 
to Year." It contains verses for every Sunday 
in the Church s year, as well as for the occasional 
services of the Prayer-book. It forms an anthology 
of his finest poems and hymns. He writes in his 
chaste and lucid English as follows : 

" It will not, I hope, seem presumptuous to 
string inferior pebbles on the same golden thread, 
upon which Heber and Keble and Monsell and 
Bishop Wordsworth have strung so many pearls 
of thought. But England s Church is waking 
more and more to the sense of the priceless legacy 
bequeathed her from the earliest ages in her 
Christian Year, as mapped out in her Prayer-book. 
The facts of our most holy faith stand out in 
bolder relief, as her children review them day by 
day, or week by week, in orderly succession. The 



LITERARY 121 

field is the world of Revelation. And if it may 
be granted the preacher or singer to present in 
clearer outline, by sermon or song, any one of the 
manifold truths, selected by the Church for our 
meditation on any Sunday or Holy Day, his labour 
will not be in vain." 

The Bishop s best known hymns occur in the 
course of the Sundays of the year. His Missionary 
hymns fall naturally into the Epiphany Season 
together with the beautiful " Litany to the Eternal 
Father." " Peace, perfect Peace " comes after the 
Second Collect for Evening Prayer, and the Com 
munion hymn, " Till He Come," after the opening 
words of the Epistle for the Fourth Sunday in 
Advent. On the First Sunday after Christmas 
there is the exquisite lyric, one of the finest in 
the whole collection 

" O God, the Rock of Ages, 
Who evermore hast been, 
What time the tempest rages, 
Our dwelling place serene : 
Before Thy first creations, 
O Lord, the same as now, 
To endless generations, 
The everlasting/Thou. 

Our years are like the shadows 
On sunny hills that lie, 
Or grasses in the meadows, 
That blossom but to die ; 
A sleep, a dream/a story 
By strangers quickly told, 
An unremaining glory 
Of things that soon are old. 

O Thou, who canst not slumber, 
Whose light grows never pale, 
Teach us aright to number 
Our years before they fail. 



122 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

On us Thy mercy lighten, 
On us Thy goodness rest, 
And let Thy Spirit brighten, 
The hearts Thyself hast blest. 

Lord, crown our faith s endeavour 
With beauty and with grace, 
Till, clothed in light for ever, 
We see Thee face to face : 
A joy no language measures ; 
A fountain brimming o er ; 
An endless flow of pleasures ; 
An ocean without shore." 

Verses for the occasional offices of the Church, 
such as those for Confirmation, Holy Matrimony, 
Visitation of the Sick, the Communion of the Sick, 
the Burial of the Dead, Commination, For those 
at Sea, will be found very appropriate. Other 
favourite hymns by the Bishop are " Come ye your 
selves apart and rest awhile," and " Pray, always 
Pray." He also brought out a Septette of Hymns 
for Missions in 1898. These are but specimens 
from a book, which is the despair of one who 
comes to it for purposes of quotation. Those who 
know it well, would be able to select many pieces 
of equal beauty. And to others it will prove 
no unworthy companion to the Christian Year. 
There can be no doubt that the aspiration, ex 
pressed in the preface to another of his books, 
will have had a manifold fulfilment ; " May He 
who directs the windborne seed to the genial soil, 
only plant a few winged words in some hearts 
where they shall not be wholly unfruitful." 

The earliest of the Bishop s prose writings was 
a small volume, " Water from the well spring for 
the Sabbath hours of Afflicted Believers, being a 



LITERARY 123 

complete course of morning and evening medita 
tions for every Sunday in the Year," published 
in 1852. It was a selection from thoughts on 
passages of Scripture, addressed to his sister Frances 
during her long illness. It has been out of print 
for many years, but is of interest as showing the 
bent of his mind from the outset, and how studious 
he was in reading and learning the Scriptures. 

His first formal treatise was a work addressed 
to the Unitarians of England, The Rock of Ages, 
in which he collected the testimonies of Holy 
Scripture to the Divinity of Christ and the 
Doctrine of the Trinity. It was not a heated 
polemic or a dry disquisition, but the expression 
of a deep conviction that many who refuse to 
acknowledge the Godhead of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, have never duly examined one line of 
scriptural argument, which presented to his own 
mind the most conclusive evidence of this founda 
tion truth. He adds, " I write from a most affec 
tionate concern for their souls, and from a deep 
assurance that in the rejection or cordial acceptance 
of this truth are bound up the issues of eternal 
death." 

His lot had been cast where many Unitarians 
resided. He praised their kindness and benevolence, 
their intellectual culture, their desire for the moral 
elevation of the poor. He had faced the very diffi 
culties which prevented them from accepting the 
Church s creed, and overcome them by prayer and the 
written word. He had had many questions brought 
before him by Unitarians and others, but he had 
met and fought most of them himself. He says 



124 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

" I can conceive no purer joy on earth than that 
of being permitted to lead some other tempest- 
tossed spirit to that faith, where I have found 
security and peace. Those I address will at least 
find here no artificial fencing, for I am no trained 
swordsman in this controversy; but sometimes it 
has pleased God to overcome gigantic error, not by 
the skilful gladiator clad in the panoply of learning, 
but by a few smooth stones from the sling of a 
shepherd boy." 

The author of the book had the happiness of 
knowing that it had brought light and peace to not 
a few who were in doubt and perplexity. It was 
widely circulated in England and America, besides 
being translated into German. He writes 

"The communications which have reached me 
on this subject, namely of help derived from the 
book, some of them sent to me from dying beds, 
and others from the bosom of home-life, may not 
be made public, but they lie deep in my heart 
among the choicest and most cherished memories 
of my ministry." 

The book was used as a class-book not only in 
schools at home but also by many of the native 
catechists of India, and those engaged in missions 
to the Jews. 

" The Rock of Ages " was followed ten years 
later by another book on similar lines, " The Spirit 
of Life." It was an expansion of one chapter in 
the previous work, which was designed to show 
that Scripture in the Old and New Testament 
alike, proves the co-equal Godhead of the Father, 
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. It 



LITERARY 125 

met with a reception for which its predecessor had 
paved the way, and appealed to those who had been 
helped by it. His subject is the Personality, the 
Godhead, and the sanctifying work of the Holy 
Ghost. A single extract from a chapter in which 
he deals with the sealing of the Spirit, will exhibit 
the freshness of treatment which makes a subject 
to live in the mind of its readers. 

" The allusion to the seal as a pledge of pur 
chase would be particularly intelligible to the 
Ephesians, for Ephesus was a maritime city, and 
an extensive trade in timber was carried on there 
by the ship-masters of the neighbouring ports. 
The method of purchase was this : the merchant, 
after selecting his timber, stamped it with his own 
signet, which was an acknowledged sign of owner 
ship. He often did not carry off his possession at 
the time ; it was left in the harbour with other 
floats of timber ; but it was chosen, bought, and 
stamped ; and in due time the merchant sent a 
trusty agent with the signet, who, finding the 
timber which bore a corresponding impress, claimed 
and brought it away for the master s use. Thus 
the Holy Spirit impresses on the soul now the 
image of Jesus Christ ; and this is the sure pledge 
of the everlasting inheritance." 

One of the most widely known of the Bishop s 
prose writings was " The Master s Home Call, 
Brief Memorials of Alice Frances Bickersteth, 
by her Father," published in 1872. It consists of 
a sermon preached in Christ Church, Hampstead, 
after her death, on September 29, 1872, with a 
postscript giving the simple story of her life, illness, 
and death. The sermon concludes with some lines 



126 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of her own written the year before, on the death of 
a friend who had been a great sufferer 

" And now her gentle ministries are o er : 
The message came for her, and fearlessly 
She answered to its summons, Here am I. 
She was so happy, for the Lord she loved 
Had heard her prayer and granted her request, 
And gently, gently, gently led her home. 
Safe, safe for ever now, no weary days 
Or sleepless nights of pain, no night is there. 
Another radiant form in white array d, 
Another brow to wear the victor s crown, 
Another hand to strike the golden harp, 
Another voice to raise the triumph song. 
We may not weep for her, we can hut join 
The angels song of praise, f Safe home, safe home. " 

The following are some verses of which the 
writer says, " as we sate by her side and watched 
sufferings I was so powerless to relieve, I wrote 
them and placed them in her hand 

" My lamb, thy path is thorny, 
And ruggedest at last ! 
The close of thy short journey, 
With storms is overcast : 
But thy Shepherd s arms enfold Thee 
His arms of love and power, 
And He will ever hold thee 
From weary hour to hour. 

My pretty one, my blossom, 
More loved than words can say, 
Upon thy parent s bosom, 
Thou could st but fade away : 
So weeping we resign thee, 
And lay our treasure down, 
For Jesus would entwine thee 
In His unfading crown. 

My own bright jewel, dearest, 
The graver s tool is keen, 
And sharpest seems when nearest 
The emerald s perfect sheen ; 



LITERARY 127 

But in the Prince s casket, 
All mark its peerless glow, 
And none will ever ask it, 
Why didst thou suffer so ? 

But yet to see thee suffer 
Seems harder evermore ; 
And the last few waves are rougher 
Than all that broke before : 
And still the gusts more thickly, 
Drive on the blinding foam : 
Come quickly, Lord, come quickly, 
And take our darling home." 

About twenty-seven thousand of "The Master s 
Home Call " were printed, and amongst those deeply 
affected by it was Mr. Gladstone, who sent copies 
of it to many of his friends. 

Two years later came " The Reef and other 
Parables," a book for young people, which did not, 
however, meet with the response which had been 
given to other works of the author. The parables 
are too elaborate for children, though teachers will 
find much that is useful in them. Two character 
istic passages may be quoted. The first is from 
" Eugene the Debtor " 

"Salvation comes straight from the heart of 
God to the heart of man. Man has only to receive 
it ; I say only to receive it : but where he has 
received it, then like Eugene, his life and not his 
lips alone, will prove his love." 

The other is from Avedah ("that which is 
lost") 

" How I wish it was a visible conflict with 
evil, said the boy. There would be something 
so heart-stirring in actually seeing the enemy and 
grasping the wonderful armour and dealing blows. 



128 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

* It is none the less real, my boy, replied Oberlin, 
for being invisible. Perhaps if you had one sight 
of the hosts of darkness it would be too much for 
you to bear. Be sure the Captain of our salvation 
has done wisely in veiling the unseen world till His 
time is come. 

Another book, " Hades and Heaven," discusses 
the revelation which Scripture gives of the estate 
and employment of the blessed dead and the risen 
saints. Much of the ground covered in it has also 
been traversed in a later work, " The Shadowed 
Home and the Light Beyond." It came out in 
1875, and consists of meditations on "The Order for 
the Burial of the Dead " in the Book of Common 
Prayer. To quote the author s words 

" It is designed for perusal in those sacred days 
which intervene between the death and burial of 
those we love. The closed shutters, or the drawn 
blinds, tell of this world being veiled from view for 
a season. And it is then, while the beloved taber 
nacle still lies in the silent chamber as in a domestic 
sanctuary, that the thoughts of the bereaved 
mourners instinctively turn to things unseen and 
eternal. Now the burial office of our Prayer-book has 
gathered together the ample testimony of Scripture 
regarding the holy dead, and presented it for <>ur 
spirits in the most admirable sequence of thought." 

Such a book cannot fail to enable those who mourn 
to take a more intelligent part in the most touching 
of all the offices of the Church. 

The book is one to be read rather than quoted, 
and yet a paragraph or two may be given from this 
treasury of comfort for the bereaved. Here is a 



LITERARY 129 

passage from the meditation on " The Threefold 
Miserere " 

" It seems as if the cry of the publican, standing 
afar off in the temple, deeming himself unworthy 
to lift up his eyes to heaven, but smiting on his 
breast and saying, * Grod be merciful to me a sinner J 
were never long absent from the minds of the com 
pilers of our liturgy. This threefold miserere is 
interwoven with the order for Morning and Evening 
Prayer, with the Litany, with the Office for Holy 
Matrimony, and The Thanksgiving after Child 
birth, with the service for the first day of Lent, 
and with that for the Visitation of the Sick : and 
its spirit interpenetrates all the other offices of the 
Prayer Book. But never does it awaken a deeper 
response in the heart than when we are standing 
by the yet unclosed grave of one whom we shall 
not see again in the flesh, until the day of the 
manifestation of the sons of God. : 

Just before this meditation there come the beautiful 
and most touching verses, " Hush, blessed are the 
dead," to which reference has been made in " From 
Year to Year." 

The book upon which Bishop Bickersteth ex 
pended most thought and study was his " Practical 
and Expository Commentary on the New Testa 
ment," which was begun in 1860 and completed 
four years later. His guiding principle is expressed 
in the title page by some words from the writings 
of the late Rev. W. Tait 

" The words of God are to theology what the 
facts are to science : they may not be set aside by 
reasoning whether we can harmonize them or not, 
they claim the obedience of faith." 

K 



130 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

The object of the commentary, it was stated, 
was "to provide such brief remarks from Holy 
Scripture as the educated classes of the day might 
read to their families at morning or evening worship, 
that golden girdle of family life. 

He sought to embody the results of some of the 
best English criticism then at his disposal. The 
notes will show that he had read widely, and thought 
out carefully and patiently the views which he 
sets forth. He felt that the responsibility of 
quoting or condensing the conclusions of other 
interpreters was scarcely inferior to expressing 
his own. He was often "tempted to argue at 
length against views from which he heartily dis 
sented," but he bore in mind the difference between 
a reviewer and a commentator, a course which 
" preserved him from turning aside from the green 
pastures and still waters of Holy Writ, to wander 
on the bleak and barren mountains of controversy." 

Such a work lay in the direction towards which 
he delighted " to draw his cares and studies," and 
he had the great satisfaction of knowing that the 
Commentary had met a real want, more than forty 
thousand copies having been sold. It was a bulky 
folio, and not easy withal to handle, yet it served 
its generation well, though now but little known. 
One or two short extracts will account for the large 
amount of favour with which it met. On St. 
Matt. xii. 1-8, he says 

" It is often urged that Christ released us 
from a strict observance of this day, i.e., the 
Sabbath. If we consider the instances He allowed, 
we shall find that He delivered us from ritual 



LITERARY 131 

bondage, and from the superstitions with which 
man had overlaid God s ordinances, and nothing 
more. He sanctioned : (1) Works of necessity, 
as here the plucking of the ears of corn, or 
leading an ox or ass to the watering (Luke xiii. 
15. (2) Works of mercy, as here lifting the sheep 
from the pit into which it had fallen ; such as 
ministering to the sick, for on this day he healed 
the man with the withered hand, the woman who 
was bowed together, the man who had the dropsy, 
and another who was blind. (3) Works of piety, 
as here he adduces the example of the priests who, 
in the temple, profane the Sabbath and are blame 
less ; and he allowed circumcision on the Sabbath, 
that the law of Moses might not be broken. But 
are these the relaxations sought in the present day 
by those who impugn the sanctity of the Sabbath ? 
Who would hinder the servants of Christ from 
such a like participation of food in their ministries 
of love ? Who would refuse the dumb pleadings 
of a suffering or starving animal ? Who would 
turn a deaf ear to the misery of his fellow-creature 
and deny the aid of medicine and skill ? Who 
would charge God s ministers with impiety for 
performing the duties of the Sanctuary, and ad 
ministering the Sacraments of His love ? How 
unlike are these things to the frivolous dissipation, 
the merely secular instruction, the pleasurable 
excursion, the unhallowed buying and selling which 
men legalize and defend ! It is, indeed, surface 
study of this and other passages, which imagines 
that Scripture tends to, and countenances, the 
desecration of God s day." 

Again in St. John xiv. 23 

"We will come" We, my Father and I, 
one God. This, then, in its first meaning, was 
a spiritual Advent, the drawing near of God 



132 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

to the soul, the indwelling of God in the hearts 
of His people. With such language the Old 
Testament had made them familiar. " Come 
and save us ; " " O, when wilt Thou come unto 
me?" (Ps. Ixxx. 2 ; ci. 3 ; Ex. xxix. 45). This 
assurance seems to have calmed and tranquilized 
every one there. Love would discern the Beloved, 
while disobedience, sure proof of the absence of 
love (ver. 24) would be blind to this spiritual pre 
sence of the Father and the Son, and deaf to the 
voice of Him who only expressed the will of His 
Heavenly Father." l 

At Hampstead he had brought out a small 
Manual, founded upon his father s " Treatise on 
the Lord s Supper," and which was entitled, " The 
Lord s Table." This he revised and published in 
1896 under the title, " The Feast of Divine Love." 
It is just what those who are familiar with the 
writings of the Bishop would expect simple, 
earnest, thoughtful, abounding in passages of great 
tenderness and beauty ; a book exceedingly help 
ful to those who would " draw near with faith and 
take this Holy Sacrament to their comfort." 

He also published the charges delivered in the 
course of his Visitations, selections from which are 
contained in a small volume entitled " Some Words 
of Counsel." 2 

After his retirement in 1900, the Bishop edited 
a volume of eighteen sermons, " Thoughts in Past 
Years," five of which were delivered when he 
was Vicar of Christ Church, Hampstead, and the 

1 For an account of a new edition of the Commentary upon which 
the Bishop worked for some years, see Appendix II. 

2 See Appendix IV. 



LITERARY 133 

remainder during the period of his episcopate. 
Attention may be called to several of them which 
were preached upon noteworthy themes and 
occasions. 

In 1876 he was asked to deliver one of a series of 
lectures in St. James , Piccadilly, on " Companions 
to the Devout Life" the subject assigned to him 
being Milton s " Paradise Lost." He had studied 
Milton from his boyhood, and could repeat long 
passages of it in early days. Those who love 
Milton will find it excellent reading. He says 

" Pictorial teaching has a vast though undefined, 
and often unsuspected power ; and with most of us, 
perhaps, who are here present to-day, the pictures 
of Milton s great Epic are like stained glass 
windows in the oratory of the soul, many of 
them very beautiful, and after Heaven s own de 
sign, but some of them, I venture to think, not 
altogether in harmony with the Scriptures of truth." 

The features of " Paradise Lost " most helpful 
to the devotional life, are its pictures of Eden 
before the fall : its delineation of human love : its 
sketches of the ministry of angels. The unfolding 
of these must be taken as a whole, for excerpts 
would but mar the symmetry and beauty of the 
thought. Again he says 

" It has been almost universally felt that 
Satan is the hero of Paradise Lost/ and that 
despite ourselves, our interest gathers round 
the fallen Lucifer, who in his illimitable pride 
is fighting against illimitable power. Perhaps 
the greatest effort of poetry in the whole volume, 
I had nearly said in the English language, is 



134 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Satan s soliloquy in the opening of the Fourth 
Book, when after forcing his way out of Tartarus 
and treading the confines of Eden, he argues the 
reason of his fall." 

The peril of this, as the author points out, is 
obvious 

" For, when condign punishment has straight 
way followed insurrection against such hopeless 
odds, when created might is wrestling with 
Omnipotence, and created wisdom with Omni 
science, it is difficult not to admire that unbending, 
indomitable will." 

There is a very eloquent passage on page 80 

" Two great epics enriched the blood of the 
world in the seventeenth century. Paradise Lost 
and Pilgrim s Progress were given almost simul 
taneously to the Church of God. Each of them 
has done its work, and been inwrought into the 
very texture of the English mind. How often 
has some pictured story from * Milton s Eden or 
Bunyan s Pilgrimage, come, like a breeze from the 
everlasting hills, to those who confess that they are 
strangers here, and that their citizen life is in 
heaven ! " 

The sermon on " Not by Might " delivered at 
his enthronement in Exeter Cathedral, has already 
been mentioned. Allusion will be made later to 
that on " the Gospel of God s Glory," preached at 
the Anniversary of the Church Missionary Society 
in St. Bride s, Fleet Street, in April, 1888. Two 
others, on " Christianity among the Jews " and 
" Oneness in Christ," give utterance to his views 



LITERARY 135 

upon subjects which he had greatly at heart, the 
latter having been preached at the Jubilee of the 
Evangelical Alliance on June 28, 1896. One more 
may also be specially noted on " The Choice 
of Moses," which he preached before the University 
of Cambridge on January 22, 1888. He closed 
with a moving appeal to his auditors, to consider 
the call to serve in the Mission Field 

" As the Bishop of a great Diocese, I know well 
the wants of towns and villages at home : but I am 
sure it is true of Churches as of men, there is that 
scattereth, and yet increaseth ; there is that with- 
holdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to 
penury. The Church which rises to the Master s 
call, Go ye into all the world, and preach the 
Gospel to every creature, is the Church, which 
will be the most blessed at home, and I would 
venture earnestly to ask those who are looking 
forward to the ministry of souls, to weigh the 
competing claims of home and foreign work, and 
to ask themselves whether God is not calling them 
to forsake parents and brethren and country for 
Christ s sake and the Gospel s. The sacrifice is 
great, the reward is inexpressibly greater." 



CHAPTER VII 

1848-1906 

Missionary enthusiasm Visits to India and Palestine, 1880 To Japan, 
1891 Extracts from letters and diaries Mr. Eugene Stock s 
notes on the Bishop s connection with the Church Missionary 
Society. 

"For My sake and the Gospel s." 

ST. MARK x. 29. 

ANY account of Bishop Bickersteth which did not 
bring out into strong relief the Missionary side 
of his career, would be very incomplete. The 
Lord s command, " Go ye into all the world and 
preach the gospel to every creature," must have 
been perpetually in his thoughts. Missionary 
interest was like a thread, shot through the web 
of his life, which coloured it with its own dis 
tinctive hue. 

His well-known Missionary hymn, " O Brothers, 
lift your voices," written for the Jubilee of the 
Church Missionary Society when he was a deacon, 
struck a chord which vibrated throughout the years 
that elapsed until the centenary of the Society was 
celebrated by him as Bishop of Exeter in 1898. 

It was also true of him that " his zeal provoked 
very many " : it was infectious, and it gave extra 
ordinary success, under God, to his advocacy of 
the Missionary cause. He prayed, he pleaded, he 

136 



MISSIONARY 137 

laboured incessantly, " in season and out of season, 
through good report and evil report." He was 
ever hopeful, sanguine, resourceful. Much of the 
spirit of the great missionary apostle St. Paul, on 
the day of whose conversion he was born, rested 
upon him. The memory of his enthusiasm will 
serve as an inspiration to encourage those who are 
cast down, and to shame those who are tempted 
to waver. 

As instances of his devotion to the Missionary 
cause, it should be mentioned that he made each 
one of his large family in childhood a member 
of the Church Missionary Society ; that he carried 
out a system of house-to-house collections for mis 
sions in his parish at Hampstead, and that year 
by year he took his men s Bible-class in vans to 
the meeting of the Church Missionary Society in 
Exeter Hall. 

This chapter will describe the Bishop s Mis 
sionary travels in India, Palestine and Japan. It 
will also contain the lucid and eloquent account 
of his relations with the Church Missionary Society, 
which Mr. Eugene Stock, his staunch and greatly 
valued friend, has very kindly contributed. 

It was on the 25th of October, 1880, that he 
sailed for Bombay with his wife and eldest daughter, 
in the City of Baltimore. 

His diary and letters give graphic descriptions 
of the voyage. He was permitted to hold a daily 
service at 10.30, besides the Sunday services, with 
celebrations of the Holy Communion and addresses. 
There are striking descriptions of nature and 
scenery, such as he records on Friday, October 29 : 



138 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

"It was the most exquisite sunset, strange shell- 
like clouds which blushed celestial rosy red." But 
it is only the Missionary side of his journey that 
can be recorded in this chapter. A single extract of 
interest, however, may be allowed, which describes 
a Sunday in the Red Sea 

" November 7, 1880. 

"We steamed out of sight of Suez and were 
in view of the Wells of Moses, the traditional and 
perhaps the most likely site of the passage of 
the Red Sea. We had service on deck at 10.30, 
when we read Exodus xv. as a special first lesson, 
within view of probably the very cliffs which had 
heard the Song at first." 

He writes from Bombay on Friday, Novem 
ber 19 

"At 8, Edward, accompanied by Mr. Squires, 
who had both been looking about the harbour in 
search of our steamer, came on board. Oh, the 
inexpressible delight of our eyes resting on his 
dear face ! He looked worn and thin, but has had 
fever during the last week, and Mr. Robert Clark, 
who is here, thinks that two months travel with 
us will be the best tonic. Words cannot describe 
the hospitality of Mr. Squires : he had us all. ^ 

Of the Sunday in Bombay he writes 

" In the afternoon I addressed some eighty of 
the English-speaking residents and others, held in 
a Major Oldham s house, and in the evening 
preached to a very full Church on, * Love is strong 
as death. Many of our ship s passengers came, and 
the Captain. On Monday morning we went and 
saw the * Robert Money School of 250 pupils, 



MISSIONARY 139 

and I addressed some sixty of them on Christian 
Ambition. We then went to the Scotch Presby 
terian College, where Edward wanted to see their 
plans. It is a most active, energetic work which 
is being carried on there." 

On the following day he visited a wealthy 
and learned Hindu, to whom Sir M. Monier- 
Williams, K.C.l.E., 1 had given him a letter of 
introduction. 

" I told our friend s son how, as a Christian, 
I longed for the time when we should all worship 
in one Christian Church ; but that I was sure it 
was good for us to get to know one another, as 
we should respect each other more. Poor young 
man ! he is a widower with two lovely little children, 
one three and a half years old, who so took to me, 
and one six months. I gave him a copy of my 
poem, which he graciously accepted." 

" November 25. 

"We drove five and a half miles to the Christian 
Station at Nasik, a village one and a half miles off 
the town, a large town of nearly 30,000 people on 
the banks of the Godavery. We had the kindest 
welcome from Mr. and Mrs. Roberts, who sent 
their servant to meet us at the station. He took 
Edward and me all over the Mission Farm, 
which is entirely worked by the Christians of the 
village. It costs the Society nothing, as it more 
than pays its way, and it affords work for the 
converts and inquirers." 

After describing their methods of cultivation, 
he adds : 

" By watering and working they have made a 
most fruitful out of a barren ground, which thing 

1 Boden Professor of Sanskrit in the University of Oxford. 



140 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

is a parable. We then saw the Christian girls, 
thirty in number Rosie s little Christina from 
Khairwarra among them, a fat, chubby child make 
and have their breakfast, a flat millet cake and 
curry soup ; very happy but very quiet. Alto 
gether this is a delightful mission station, and 
seems a centre of labour for which we cannot 
be sufficiently thankful. We are here 1900 feet 
above the sea level, and with a west wind they 
get the benefit of sea breezes, though the sea is 
sixty miles distant." 

His next letter was from Cawnpore Dec. 1, 
1880. They had stayed three days at Jubbalpur, 
part of which they spent at the Church of England 
Zenana Mission, with Miss Brand and Miss Evans. 
They drove eleven miles to see the famous marble 
rocks 

"which are wonderfully grand. The river Nar- 
budda rushes through precipitous cliffs of marble ; 
the white is the loveliest, though some is blue 
(they call it heavenly ) and some yellow marble. 
They say the river bed is, in places, 200 feet 
deep. On the first Sunday in Advent Edward 
preached in Hindustani. He spoke with the 
greatest facility, and the people hung on his 
words. In the evening we attended the English 
service, conducted by the chaplain ; good congre 
gation, hearty singing, quaint, clever High Church 
sermon from a stranger, who looked up to the 
ceiling all the time he spoke." 

They travelled via Allahabad, where they 
changed carriages, and were met at Cawnpore 
by " kind Mr. Stone, the chaplain, Montie s friend 
at Aijmere, who loaded us with kindness. The 



MISSIONARY 141 

interest of Cawnpore as the site of the Massacre is 
almost overpowering. We have been to the 
Memorial Church and saw the monument raised 
over the well. They are most impressive, and 
every few yards is sacred with heroic memories." 
On Dec. 7 from Agra 

" We had a most enjoyable time at Lucknow, 
where we spent four days. Nothing could exceed 
the loving welcome which George and Harriet 
Durrant gave us. On Thursday we saw all over 
the ruined Presidency, which was held with such 
Spartan courage by our soldiers in the Mutiny. 
We saw the room where Sir Henry Lawrence was 
struck by the shell, the house where he died, and 
the grave where he was buried by night in silence 
in the graveyard, lest any voices should attract the 
enemy s fire. The tombstone bears these words, 
at his own dying request 

Here lies 

HENRY LAWRENCE, 

who tried to do his duty. 

May the Lord have mercy on his soul ! 

Born 20th June, 1806. Died 4th July, 1857. 

I read Dr. Gubbin s account of the Mutiny all 
day, being seedy. On Friday, in the afternoon, 
we rode on an elephant, which the Colonel kindly 
sent us, into the town, and to the old fort where 
the powder magazine was blown up during the 
siege. On Saturday we saw the vigorous Boys 
School of 300 boys, the busiest hive of industry, 
under its Christian head-master, Mr. Sietal, such 
an intelligent man ; the second master was baptized 
last Christmas. It would be indeed cruel to give 
up a work like this. On Sunday, Edward preached 
to some 1300 men and officers in the Cantonment 
Church. George preached in Urdu in the Mission 



EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Church in the morning, and I in English in the 
evening, and on Monday morning we started quite 
early after the most enjoyable visit. We feel 
our hearts quite knit to those dear single-hearted 
labourers for Christ, who are left to hold the fort 
till more prosperous days enable us at Salisbury 
Square to send them reinforcements." 

"We reached Agra at 11 at night. Here we 
have been simply entranced by the Taj its serene 
simplicity and purity of taste, and at the same time 
its majesty of outline, make you feel you can never 
tire of looking at it. 

"On Thursday we went again and stayed there 
till the evening light bathed the peerless marble in 
rose and ruby." 

"Ajmere, December 13, 1880. 

"Thank God, Edward is wonderfully better, 
and felt himself strong enough to attempt the long, 
slow journey, twenty-one hours for 232 miles. We 
threaded our way among the Raj pootana hills, rising 
abruptly from the plains to which our railway 
religiously kept. R. and M. met us in one of the 
Maharajah s carriages (he has always two at his 
command) to their palace home. It is far hand 
somer than I expected. The young king and one 
of his nobles were present at dinner, though of 
course taking nothing, which would have broken 
their caste. I had no conception that Ajmere 
would be so beautiful : it is far the loveliest place 
we have yet seen in India. 

" On the evening of the 16th there was a total 
eclipse of the moon for nearly two hours. I never 
saw one so distinctly as in those crystal skies. But 
it was so strange and sad to see the nervous alarm 
of the Maharajah. The Hindus say a dragon is 
devouring the moon (hence its red colour), and they 
appoint a fast ; the young prince s astrologer played 



MISSIONARY 143 

upon the boy s fears, and kept repeating Ram, 
Ram, for hours. After dinner we drew the Maha 
rajah into the drawing-room, and explained to him 
what caused the eclipse with the lamp, and an 
orange casting its shadow on our hand. And I 
think by degrees his fears subsided, but he was 
restless and disquieted. The next morning when 
I met him on the tennis-ground, I said, Well, 
Maharajah, the moon is none the worse for her 
eclipse (for she was shining over our heads on one 
side and the sun on the other), nor the sun, are 
they ? He laughed, the danger being over. How 
I long that the boy may find Christ : a fine open- 
hearted fellow. It seems very hard not to be 
allowed to point him to the Star of Bethlehem." 

Captain Rundall, his son-in-law, was tutor to 
the Maharajah. 

" We reached Delhi at nine, and there, at the 
station, were Allnutt and Lefroy, Mr. and Mrs. 
Winter, and Mr. Maitland, all waiting for us. 
Allnutt and I walked, the rest drove, passing 
through the ramparts which our brave troops 
stormed in 1857. This is a most pleasant bunga 
low on rising ground, with plenty of trees round 
it. It seems to me in many ways admirably suited 
for their little community, their monastery, as they 
sometimes gaily call it, though anything more un 
like a monastery their happy life here could not be. 
They are bright and cheerful, and fond as brothers 
of each other. Mr. Lefroy 1 is the housekeeper just 
now, and does it admirably. And then, their mis 
sionary work is so real and absorbing, they give 
their whole heart to it. On Sunday morning I 
heard Edward preach another sermon, and came 
with them to the Holy Communion. There were 

1 Now Bishop of Lahore. 



144 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

nearly two hundred in church, but only a few com 
municants (some twenty or twenty-four), as they 
are probably reserving themselves for Christmas 
Day. The joy of the circle was shadowed by Mr. 
Blackett s illness ; he has had fever on him, and the 
doctor has condemned him to go home immediately. 
They hope he may return after two years, but 
Murray s and his health failing is a heavy drain on 
their party of six. 

" On Monday we went over the fort, which was 
the palace of the old kings of Delhi, and the centre 
of the great Mogul Empire. The marble hall of 
audience, richly gilded and inlaid, with its zenana 
palace on one side, and its magnificent baths on the 
other, scented with countless roses, was magnificent. 
And then we went on to the Jumah Musjid, the 
largest Mahommedan Mosque in India, and Edward 
and I climbed the minaret, from which we had a 
wonderful view of this great thriving city. That 
night I went out with them to their bazaar preach 
ing, such a unique scene, nearly a hundred clustering 
round the two catechists who spoke, Allnutt, Edward 
and I standing behind them, eager faces looking up 
into ours." 

The arrival of his children from Ajmere at 
Delhi for Christmas added greatly to the joy of the 
festival. He writes on December 26 

" While I was preaching yesterday at St. James 
(the English church), the Brothers were all at St. 
Stephen s, where they had 170 communicants. This 
morning I have been preaching by interpretation 
there. I stood on the chancel step, and Tarachand, 
the native pastor, stood by my side and interpreted 
my address, sentence by sentence. I took as my 
text, So great salvation, Heb. ii. 3, alluding to 



MISSIONARY 145 

Christmas and the last Sunday in the year, also to 
St. Stephen, whose name their church bears." 

He mentions speaking at a service held at a 
station which was supported by one of the members 
of his congregation at Hampstead 

" The Christ Church student Botak was too far 
off to visit. You would, indeed, thank God for the 
vigorous missionary life pervading every part of this 
station, and the Cambridge men are so happy in 
each other." 

The travellers, including the Rev. E. Bickersteth 
(his son), left Delhi for Lahore on December 27, 
as the next letter says, " with hearts full of grati 
tude and love," passing through Meerut, with its 
immense military cantonment, where the Mutiny 
first broke out. 

Early in the morning they left the train at 
Umritsur, except Edward Bickersteth, who went 
on, and spent the day with Mr. Bateman and the 
Rev. R. Clark. Mr. Bickersteth addressed the 
members of the native Church Council, which was 
in session. Many of them were of high position, 
for he writes 

" At Umritsur the Gospel has conquered men 
of rank. It was the most striking result of Christian 
missions I have yet seen. Afterwards we drove to 
the golden temple of the Sikhs ; their worship is a 
mixture of Hinduism and Islamism, no idol in the 
temple, but a great book, covered with a cloth, 
before which they make offerings of flowers, 
fruit, and money. Some rude music was kept up 
all the time. We had to take off our shoes and 



146 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

wear slippers before we crossed the marble bridge 
leading to the temple, which is built in the midst 
of a great tank. We also saw the large mission 
schoolroom for boys (200), two orphanages for boys 
and girls, the Alexandra School, a noble institution 
for Christian girls of high caste. Most of them were 
away for their Christmas holidays, except some 
eight or nine of them, such bright intelligent girls. 
I spoke to them of the inscription on the Lollard s 
tower, Lambeth, Jesus amor meus. We also 
called on the zenana ladies. It was so pleasant to 
find Miss Smith (of Hampstead Hill Gardens) so 
earnest and happy in the work. If you see her 
mother, do tell her how well and bright her daughter 
looks. The whole mission is full of life." 

Of their visit at Lahore, he says 

"The kind Bishop met us at the station, and 
drove us and Archdeacon Matthew 1 (the most 
fascinating of men) to Bishopstowe in his carriage. 
The next morning, December 29, the Synod began 
with early service, Holy Communion and part of 
the Bishop s charge in the pro- Cathedral. At eleven 
o clock we met, some fifty of us, in a large tent 
opposite the palace door. The Bishop s opening 
address was quite apostolic. I then read my paper 
on the Christian Ambassador, and the Bishop 
insists on printing it with his charge. My second 
paper was delayed till the evening in the Lawrence 
Hall ; it was on the love of Christ, and the love of 
His appearing. The subjects of the Synod were 
varied ; all was full of interest, though our dear 
Bishop, the best of men, is not the best of chair 
men. But his goodness and profound learning 
overcame everything. On Saturday, at night, Mr. 
Shirreff and Mr. Weitbrecht invited some sixty of 

1 Afterwards Bishop of Lahore. 



MISSIONARY 147 

the native converts. The Bishop sat among them 
as if they were his children, and would have me 
speak to them while they ate sweetmeats. 

" On Monday I attended the Missionary Confer 
ence for two hours, and then the Bishop drove us 
to the fort, the tomb of Runjit Singh, and the 
great mosque where, the Moslem Commissioner 
told us, 2000 had been praying that afternoon for 
Lord Ripon, as they felt so deep a regard for him, 
seeing the Government had helped them to rebuild 
their mosque. 

" At Benares Edward s kind friend, Mr. 
Hackett, the C.M.S. Missionary, met us and 
took us to his pleasant home in the suburbs. 
Mrs. Hackett is the granddaughter of a delight 
ful old lady who has a beautiful estate there, a 
Mrs. Kennedy, who will be 94 in March ; but she 
is as active as if she were 24. She was married 
at 15, had 18 children, of whom 8 are still alive, 
the eldest being her dear boy of 75 years ! She 
has scores of grandchildren and great grand 
children, having had 169 direct descendants born 
to her, of whom 118 are still alive. She has lived 
all her life in India, and lost eight of her family in 
the Mutiny. She always uses your Grandfather s 
book of family prayers, and knows our little 
* Home Call quite well. So we were made wel 
come by her, and I gave her The Shadowed 
Home. Benares is the stronghold of Hinduism, 
and poor humanity seems enslaved in the bitterest 
slavery there. The day we arrived we drove to 
the Monkey Temple, where were at least 100 
monkeys overrunning every part of it, doorways 
and roofs and sculptures and images. It was 
piteous to see the devotees, as they entered the 
shrine, and seemed to pray to the hideous idol, and 
struck a suspended bell ere they went out, 
their worship done. Then we went to a lecture 



148 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

by Mr. Hooper in the large divinity school, on 
The image of God being the dignity of man, to 
the learned natives of Benares. There were some 
sixty men present, more than half of them young 
men. Mr. Hooper invited discussion afterwards, 
and I spoke and others." 

He describes a row down the Ganges, where 
they passed close to one of the burning ghats on 
which they burn the dead, also a visit to the 
Golden Temple with its Well of Knowledge. 
" Surely," he says, " in Benares, Satan s Throne is." 
He visited also the Maharajah, to whom they had 
a letter of introduction, and he preached on Sunday 
at the Station Church. 

"At Calcutta the kind Bishop (Dr. Johnson) 
had sent his carriage for us (the same carriage which 
Bishop Wilson had) and met us on the staircase ; 
his sisters soon came and gave us the kindest 
welcome, though at seven in the morning. The 
Bishop gave his charge to some 65 clergy in the 
Cathedral ; it was a good, large-hearted charge. 

" I am (D.V.) to preach twice on Sunday. This 
afternoon M., Edward, the Bishop of Colombo and 
I called on Keshub Chunder Sen, to whom I had 
sent Professor Monier- Williams note of introduc 
tion. He was most courteous and interesting, and 
showed us his little prayer-meeting room in his 
house. I gave him my poem, of which the 
Professor had written to him. We must try and 
hear him give an address next Saturday afternoon. 
We had a capital Missionary meeting last night 
from 9 to 11 o clock in the Town Hall. Mr. 
Whitley, from Chota Nagpore, gave a most 
interesting account of his (S.P.G.) work among the 
aboriginal Gonds, dear Mr. Vaughan a glowing 



MISSIONARY 149 

address on the C.M.S. work of the last 25 years, 
Edward on school work and bazaar preaching, and 
I a short address at the end on * How it strikes a 
stranger. 

On January 18, the party went to Darjeeling. 
Returning on the 22nd, Mr. Bickersteth writes 

" We had the most charming four days outing. 
It was a great matter to travel nearly 800 miles to 
see mountains that might be wrapt in mist and 
cloud, but God was most gracious to us, and we 
have seen scenery we can never forget." 

The entire description, which is too long to 
give, closes thus 

" On Friday morning I was out by 6. The 
moon was up and not a single cloud between 
us and the whole range of mountains. We 
can never forget the sight, it was a pearl-like 
transparency, something so ethereal and tender ; it 
did not seem of the world, but it might have been 
the steps of heaven let down to earth." 

On his return to Calcutta, he heard the address 
from Keshub Chunder Sen, when about 3000 men 
were present. " A torrent of eloquence ; he has 
reached Deism," was the comment. 

" This morning I preached to an excellent 
congregation in the Old Church ; they had the 
Benedicite, which after Darjeeling was the utter 
ance of my heart." The next letter was from 
Bombay, January 28, 1881, whither they had 
travelled from Calcutta, having parted from 
Edward Bickersteth at Allahabad, with overflow 
ing thankfulness for the great mercies of ten weeks 



150 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

together. The party sailed from Bombay in the 
Speke Hall, on Saturday, January 29, and reached 
Suez on February 10, having had a smooth voyage. 
After a short trip to Cairo and the Pyramids, they 
sailed from Alexandria to Jaffa, where, on February 
19, they visited the schools for girls and boys 
carried on by Miss Arnott and Miss Davison. 
The former was a great admirer of " Yesterday, 
To-day and For Ever," and a clergyman who had 
sailed with them from Alexandria told the author 
that he owed to it his first deep religious im 
pressions. 

They met Canon Tristram (of Durham) in 
Jerusalem, and joined his party for a trip to the 
East of Jordan. Mr. Bickersteth writes 

" Tristram is the life of the party, plucking every 
rare flower and shooting rare birds. He thinks it 
well the Arabs should know that we are armed. Our 
Bedouin Chief, whom he upbraided with pillaging 
travellers while professing to be a pious man, replied, 
It is indeed true ; I am a pious man. But if God 
spreads a plentiful breakfast before me, should I 
not be very ungrateful not to partake of it ? And 
if I see a party of unarmed travellers, God has 
given them to me ; why should I refuse His gift ? 
If, however, they are armed, it is different. I 
might happen to get an ugly wound. I will let 
them alone." 

Accounts of visits to Elealeh, Nebo, Mediba 
and Rabbath Ammon, which were delightful, must 
be passed over. They arrived at Es Salt, or 
Ramoth Gilead, on March 5, after a very rough 
journey. He says 



MISSIONARY 151 

"All the Christians of the place turned 
out to welcome us. Mahaba (or Welcome) 
was heard on every side, and Mr. Jamal, 
David s brother, the C.M.S. Native Missionary, 
received us more hospitably than I can say. Having 
four rooms in his house, he turned all his family 
into one, giving us three, and providing another in 
a Christian s house for three of our gentlemen. 

" Yesterday, Sunday, was a most delightful day. 
There are about 350 Protestant Christians here, 
full of love and zeal. Service was at 9 o clock. 
The church, which is in Mr. Jamal s court, was 
quite filled. There were fine, intelligent faces. 
The service was in Arabic, a most melodious 
language. I preached a short sermon, which Mr. 
Jamal interpreted. There would have been more 
people, but several of the Christians are away with 
their flocks on the lower grounds. After dinner 
they came flocking into the house to salute us, and 
said that the memory of the day would live in their 
hearts for years. In the afternoon there was the 
litany, and the children and adults were catechized. 
Tristram addressed them on The little Israelitish 
maid, and I spoke to them on the Irish prayer, 
and gave them copies. 

Five of us walked to the double summit of 
Mount Gilead, one of which commands the upper 
valley of the Jordan, with the river Jabbok running 
through it (its jagged channel was clearly marked 
in the plain below us), and the other command 
ing the plain of Jericho and the Dead Sea and 
Nebo. It is wonderful to see what fresh life has 
been poured into the country since Tristram was 
here last. Five hundred new vineyards have 
been planted during the last five or six years. 
The mountain is now planted to its very summit. 
The inhabitants of Salt are increasing every month, 
and it now numbers eleven thousand. It is 



152 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

delightful to see the Missionary love and zeal here. 
We examined the schools this morning, such quick 
witted handsome boys and girls, so many Moslems 
under instruction, and such love pervading the 
whole work. To-night we have had a long con 
sultation with Mr. Jamal, as to the best means for 
gathering in the harvest of souls. The church and 
schools are too small, and they sorely want 
a separate school for girls, a Zenana or Harem 
Missionary woman, and a Medical Missionary. 
I trust our report may persuade the C.M.S. to do 
more. 

The Governor, whom I went to see, told 
me that he was so convinced of the goodness of 
the Mission School, that he was going to take his 
son, a boy of nine years, from the Moslem School 
where he had been for a year and a half, and now 
could not read a verse in the Koran, and send him 
to our school. This was good news, as it will have 
great effect upon the other Mahommedans here. 
All the Christians had gathered to bid us farewell, 
kissing our hands and pressing them to their fore 
heads. Then we filed out of the narrow gate, 
through the steep, rugged streets, and climbing the 
precipitous cliff on one side of the valley, we 
came suddenly upon seventy-five of the school 
children, whom the master had brought out to 
stand on a knoll over which we rode, to bid us 
farewell. They sang the most beautiful Arabic 
hymn, which Mr. Jamal translated, committing us 
to the care of God, and then the dear children 
clustered round us and kissed our hands. We 
could hardly get away from them. Again and 
again they bade us farewell, and as we rode down 
the rocks into the steep defile, they ranged them 
selves on the edge of the hill and shouted their 
hurrahs till we were out of sight. Mr. Jamal 
accompanied us on horseback some way further. 



MISSIONARY 153 

Again there was hearty kissing between David and 
his relations, and we felt indeed what true primitive 
Christian love pervaded that rising Church." 

His letters written during the Palestine tour 
contain vivid descriptions of travel, and have the 
charm of his poetic fancy and scriptural knowledge, 
but their Missionary character is not so pronounced 
as that of the Indian series. He visited the 
Stations wherever he went, cheering and being 
cheered by those who, to use his own words, " were 
in the high places of the field." At Damascus he 
visited the cemetery where Jane Frances, Countess 
Teleki, the only daughter of his uncle, Henry 
Bickersteth, Lord Langdale, was laid to rest in 
1870. He writes : " How little I thought when I 
saw her such a thing of beauty the year my father 
died, that I should stand beside her grave in a far- 
off land." At Beyrout, April 10, he adds 

" I addressed the children of the British Syrian 
Schools, which; are foil, brimful of life and 
interest, and preached this morning on, Let not 
your heart be troubled, to a large congregation 
in the American Presbyterian Church, which they 
allowed us to use for an Episcopal Service. We 
are to have the Holy Communion this afternoon 
and an evening Conference. 

" The work of Christ going on here is most en 
couraging, and every mission field seems to tell its 
own tale of the joy of unselfish labour for the 
Master. His labourers are so happy and can sing 
over their work. What a mercy to have the 
humblest share in it ! We had an interesting in 
sight into the British Syrian Schools yesterday. 



154 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

I took a Bible-class with all the children, which 
seemed wonderfully to interest them, on Heaven." 

" Smyrna, Good Friday. 

"To-day has been the strangest Good Friday 
1 ever spent. We were wakened at 2 a.m. by our 
steamer running against an ironclad vessel in the 
harbour of Scio. Thank God, not much mischief 
was done, though the collision partially stove in 
one of our boats, and snapped and twisted great 
bars of iron. We soon found ourselves, a motley 
group, on deck, half dressed, some awakened by 
the shock, and some longing to see Scio, which has 
been so seriously injured with earthquakes. There 
had been one twenty minutes before we landed, 
and only one house in the vast town is left 
unshaken." 

The travellers reached Hampstead on the after 
noon of April 28, 1881, after a short stay in 
Italy, having carried out almost to the letter the 
programme which they had marked out for 
themselves. 

If this tour could not be said to have increased 
a Missionary enthusiasm which had long been at 
white heat, Mr. Bickersteth turned to admirable 
account the enriched experience, and the personal 
contact with the great problems of the Mission 
Field which it gave him. 

The second of the Bishop s Missionary journeys 
was undertaken under different auspices ten years 
later. Edward Bickersteth had been working as 
Bishop at Tokyo since 1887, and it was natural 
that the English Bishop should visit his son in 
his own field of service. It was with the warm 
approval of Archbishop Benson that arrangements 



MISSIONARY 155 

^vvere made for an absence of nearly five months 
from August, 1891. Bishop Barry, late of Sydney, 
undertook episcopal duty in the diocese, and 
Bishop Bickersteth, accompanied by his wife 
and his daughter May, sailed from Liverpool 
for Montreal on the ss. Parisian. The letters 
and diaries of those months are replete with 
graphic detail and picturesque description, which 
are very tempting, but a rigid economy of space 
is imperative. The beautiful scenery of the St. 
Lawrence, the majesty of Niagara, the impressive- 
ness of the huge stretches of prairie, the rugged 
grandeur of the Rocky Mountains, were all duly 
recorded. One extract may be allowed in which 
he gave his impressions of Archbishop Tait, whose 
life he was reading 

"What a grand life of godly sincerity it is, 
and Davidson 1 has done his work, to my thinking, 
with a master s hand to perfection. I have now 
read three-fourths of the two volumes, and feel it 
quite a solemn responsibility to have had such a 
noble example sketched before one s mind s-eye 
so vividly. It is very humbling, for there was 
nothing little about the man, just because his eye 
was single and his whole body full of light. What 
adds to the interest to me, is that the memoir 
revives the events, quorum pars exiguafui" 

The acme of joy and thankfulness was reached, 
in the meeting with Bishop Edward Bickersteth 
at Banff. He had been greatly prostrated by 
illness, and it was thought that the best thing 
for him would be a voyage to Vancouver and 

1 Archbishop of Canterbury. 



156 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

back with his father, who thus describes their 
greeting 

" There, at Banff, on the station, was our 
beloved Edward, waiting to greet us. He looks 
well but worn, and has been very ill a month 
in bed, but just recovered in time to come the 
voyage." 

The Bishop s party embarked at Vancouver 
by the ss. Empress of Japan, on September 9, 1891, 
and after a somewhat rough voyage, especially 
towards the close, they landed in Yokohama on 
the 23rd. The charm of his personality had drawn 
not a few amongst the passengers into close inter 
change of thought with him. He writes 

" Several Americans have come and thanked 
me for my poem which they had read years ago, 
and one told me yesterday how it had been engraven 
on his soul, when tempted to make the accumu 
lation of property his object in life, and especially 
the words I put in the mouth of Mammon, Book VI. 
AU thanks to God." 

From Tokyo he wrote, on September 26 

" Such a hearty welcome by the brotherhood 
at St. Andrew s. At the 5 p.m. service in the 
lovely little church, the St. Hilda s and the St. 
Andrew s party joined us in offering praise for 
our safe voyage. It was a great mercy escaping 
the typhoon they have had. We went all over 
St. Hilda s on Thursday ; it is a most thoughtfully 
and efficiently planned home, though just now the 
flowing tide of pupils has ebbed to thirty-four The 
wave of thought has rather set against foreigners, 
but it will probably soon turn again. On Friday we 



MISSIONARY 157 

visited the Ladies Institute, which is under Miss 
Macrae, her sister, and their band of teachers, and 
supplies the best education in Tokyo. It occupies 
a huge building, one wing of the Engineers Insti 
tute, placed at the ladies disposal by the Government 
for five years. There are some sixty-six huge rooms 
in it, most of which were empty, and about sixty 
pupils, but of the first families in Tokyo. There 
is no direct religious instruction in the morning 
school hours, but Miss Macrae has a class which 
all who like may attend. Edward said that the 
indirect influence for Christ was very good in the 
highest ranks. And Miss Macrae s sister told me 
that one of the first members of Government, who 
had been impressed by Christianity, overheard his 
young daughter praying in his home, and said, I 
can resist no longer ; if my child prays like that, 
I must be a Christian. And he did confess 
Christ, and was baptized. There is another pupil 
quite ready for baptism, but her father will not 
give his consent." 

There are frequent accounts of addresses to 
Missionary workers, as well as to Japanese 
Christians. 

On October 5 a vivid description is given, of 
visits to Nikko and Ikao. 

" Nikko is about ninety miles North of Tokyo, 
on the hills. There is an avenue of splendid pines 
twenty miles long leading from the plain to the 
tomb of leyasu, the greatest general and ruler Japan 
ever produced (born 1542, died 1616, at Nikko). 
The railway runs alongside this avenue and un 
ceremoniously cuts across it. The great Shinto 
Temple, or Mausoleum, is in front of the tomb 
and hides it, but passing through the temple, up 
some two hundred and seventy steps, you find the 



158 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

plain, and comparatively unadorned tomb under 
the open heaven, as if they felt * man at his best is 
altogether vanity. The Mausoleum was certainly 
superb with its carvings and colouring. The rich 
red pagoda among the pines was most striking, 
and the pines are marvellous. Edward, N., M., 
and I, with our arms stretched out, could nearly 
gird one of them. It must have been from twenty- 
five to thirty feet round, and this was only one of 
them." 

The entry in the Bishop s diary on October 6th 
records a visit to Bishop Nicolai, of the Greek 
Church, who was out, but they saw his Cathedral 
and climbed its roof. On the day after he 
continues 

"We went to Mrs. Kirkes At Home for 
Japanese ladies of the highest circles and some 
distinguished men, who were wise, social, sym 
pathetic, cultivated. I longed for power to plead 
for Christ, but see with Mrs. Kirkes, the import 
ance of breaking down social prejudices. Her 
influence for the Gospel is very real." 

" Friday, October 7. 

" Last night Edward had a large At Home of 
more than a hundred and twenty guests, amongst 
whom were some most interesting Japanese ladies. 
I was especially attracted to a young man, the son 
of the Prime Minister, and also by Mr. Sannomiya, 
the Vice Chamberlain of the Empress s Court. He 
married an English Churchwoman, and though he 
has not yet embraced Christianity, told me he was 
sure Japan would become Christian, and that on 
the lines of the English Church. 

" This afternoon we went to Mr. Moore s house 
in the Mita school, one of the most important 



MISSIONARY 159 

educational institutions of Japan, with some two 
thousand boys. This was the scene of Mr. Lloyd s 
labours. Christianity is not taught during school 
hours, but the boys and young men are drawn to 
come to the Mission Chapel near by. The Principal 
of the school is a man of great mental power, and 
though favourably tolerant of Christianity and 
most courteous, is still an unbeliever. If he could 
be won, and others like him, and by God s grace 
become an advocate of the faith, Japan would feel 
the influence to its remotest limits." 

On October 14, when they left Tokyo, he 
writes 

"It was really quite touching to find so 
many Japanese Christians as well as English 
friends on the railway platform to bid us God 
speed on our journey to Nagoya. We en 
joyed glorious views of Fuji, 12,365 feet high 
Memoria Technica 12 months 365 days. Mr. 
Robinson and his catechist met us at the station. 
Yesterday (Sunday, October 18th), was most in 
teresting. I walked down with Edward to their 
preaching house, which they use as their church. 
There was first the Confirmation (one old man 
of sixty and two young women were confirmed). 
Edward read the service, and addressed them in 
Japanese with the greatest fluency. The singing 
of two hymns was good, especially the Japanese 
version of Lyte s hymn, * Jesus, I my cross have 
taken. We then all received the Holy Com 
munion ten Japanese and five of us the three 
confirmed communicating. It was to me a most 
touching service altogether, and full of prophetic 
hope for Japan, since Nagoya is a stronghold of 
Buddhism and one of the cities least touched by 
Western thought. Here there had been open 



i 



160 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

opposition. They had threatened to burn the 
preacher s house and stone the Missionaries, who, 
however, went very quietly about their work, not 
shrinking from any services, though they found 
they were sometimes guarded, unknown to them 
selves, by fifteen or twenty policemen, to prevent 
an assault being made on them. Now the opposi 
tion has ceased. 

That afternoon the English-speaking of all 
denominations of Protestant Christians came to 
evensong in Mr. Robinson s house. We were 
thirty in number, and I preached to them from 
Rom. viii. 32. The message was heartily received. 
The old man, who was confirmed in the morning, 
when Mr. Robinson asked him what he meant 
to do with his idol, and its costly lacquered and 
gilded box, had said he thought he would sell it, 
as it was worth some thirty dollars. Mr. Robinson 
asked Edward and me what we should advise. It 
was a difficult question, as thirty dollars was a great 
sum to the poor old man. But the question was 
delightfully solved in the evening by the old man 
coming up to Mr. Robinson, and saying he would 
give it to him. Edward owes Mr. Robinson to 
Toronto. They sorely want a new church, and 
hope to secure a good site." 

But the most exciting experience of their whole 
tour was the terrible earthquake, which occurred 
during their stay at Osaka on Wednesday, October 
18th. Mercifully none of themselves or their kind 
friends, Archdeacon Warren and his family, whom 
they were visiting, were injured. The Bishop 
writes. 

% 

"On Tuesday evening the Archdeacon asked 
me to take their family prayers, and I had chosen 



MISSIONARY 161 

Psalm xci., and said a few words on our home 
in God, its security and blessedness. It was an 
oppressively hot night, but we slept, and the 
servant had brought us tea at 6.30 ; not having 
been very well, I was drinking it in bed, when we 
felt the first sway of the shock. But those we had 
experienced in Tokyo so soon ceased, we expected 
every oscillation would be the last, but they 
became stronger and stronger, till the house, 
though substantially built, shuddered and trembled 
and swerved to and fro, and one of the windows 
was burst open. I called to N. to come under 
the door frame, which, narrow as it was, would 
afford some shelter if the building fell. We were 
both in our night-dresses, and she was coming, 
when another shock dashed the door against my 
foot and hand, bruising them. However, I got 
the door open again, and I was thankful indeed 
to get N. under it. Here we stayed till the house 
righted itself and was still. Edward ran to the 
front door, unlocked it, and got into the garden, 
when he found the earth distinctly reeling under 
him. It was delightful to see the Archdeacon s 
beautiful spirit of childlike trustfulness and thank 
fulness. It seems almost selfish to write so much 
about ourselves, when thousands and tens of 
thousands have suffered so terribly." 

The visits to Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe and Naga 
saki, where the travellers embarked for Hong 
Kong, were of exceeding interest. The parting 
between father and son took place on Sunday, 
November 15th. 

"At 9 o clock, Japanese morning prayer and 
a Confirmation of three young men (two of them 
medical students) and four young women, with an 
earnest address from Edward. Then English 

M 



164 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

our Society has been led by God to send many 
labourers into that missionary field. I believe it 
will prove wise strategy in the great and good 
warfare we are waging. 

" I was very thankful to learn lately from a 
missionary on furlough that during the last seven 
years there has been a marked change among the 
Japanese students at Tokyo : it was formerly their 
fashion during their college course to study Herbert 
Spencer and adopt agnosticism. Now they have 
grown tired of Spencer and devote themselves to 
books on political economy, their main object being 
to get their country on. But modern books under 
mine their old beliefs, they are wavering and 
dissatisfied, and come to the Missionaries with their 
questions. It is a great opportunity. Forgive my 
special interest in India (of which he had spoken) 
and Japan, where my eldest son, whom God has 
called to his rest, laboured for twenty years, first at 
Delhi as one of the Cambridge University Mission, 
and then in Tokio, for Jesus sake and the Gospel s." 

The Bishop s ardent love for the Church Mis 
sionary Society, and his life-long advocacy of its 
work, brought him into close and constant touch 
with its committee. Mr. Eugene Stock, for many 
years one of the lay secretaries, writes as follows 
respecting his connection with the Society, and his 
general interest in the cause of missions 

" No Bishop of our time has been so devoted to 
the foreign missionary enterprise, and so identified 
with its interests, as Bishop Bickersteth. In the 
following brief account of this phase of his life, we 
may glance at his connection with the Church 
Missionary Society, and his utterances on the 
subject of missions 



MISSIONARY 165 



" His connection with the Church Missionary 
Society dates, of course, from his earliest years, 
concerning which this is not the place to speak. In 
the Society s own records the first notable service 
of his to the cause is writing a Missionary hymn for 
the Society s Jubilee, 1848-9. That hymn, *O, 
brothers, lift your voices, is popular to this day 
in Church Missionary Society circles, and indeed 
wherever the Hymnal Companion is in use. It 
was a unique privilege, which he highly valued, 
when it fell to him, at the close of another fifty 
years, to write the principal hymn for the Society s 
Centenary ; and he produced the now well-known 
For My sake and the Gospel s, go, the popularity 
of which, well deserved for its own merits, has been 
helped, by Sir A. Sullivan s permission, to link with 
it his famous tune composed for Queen Victoria s 
Diamond Jubilee. 

" During the whole period of Mr. Bickersteth s 
incumbency of Christ Church, Hampstead, he was 
a valued member of the Church Missionary Society 
Committee. Although not one of the most pro 
minent in its discussions, and unable to give time 
to attend its numerous subsidiary committees, he 
could always be depended upon for counsel on 
important occasions, especially when private matters 
arising out of the relations of individual missionaries 
to the committee, or to each other had to be dealt 
with. At such times his loving and generous 
nature made his influence specially important. On 
controversial questions he was always on the mode 
rate side, and in his later years he was a real help 
in this respect to Mr. Wigram. 

"Mr. Bickersteth s services to the Society in 
regard to its funds were of unique value. Again 
and again, when deficits were reported, owing to 



166 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

the expansion of the work growing faster than the 
income, he started additional funds to meet the 
difficulty. In 1880, for instance, he wrote a power 
ful letter, headed by the words with which his 
Centenary hymn opened eighteen years later, For 
My sake and the Gospel s, and urging a higher 
scale of subscription, to exemplify which he and 
three other friends promised to give thenceforth 
100 a year each. At the same time he handed the 
Society 1000 to start a new mission to the Bhil 
tribes in Rajpatana (and a second 1000 a few years 
later), his interest in them having been awakened 
by the residence in their neighbourhood of one of 
his daughters, who was married to an Anglo-Indian 
officer. Then in 1882 he wrote proposing to in 
crease the income by * half as much again, and by 
way of illustration advanced his own subscription 
from 100 to 150. Many contributors followed 
his example ; but subscriptions are only a part of 
a Society s resources, and church collections gener 
ally were unaffected by the appeal, while a legacy 
of 1000 did not become 1500 because Mr. Bicker- 
steth had written his letter. So the result he aimed 
at was not achieved then, nor for several years 
after ; but his own generosity was none the less on 
that account. Meanwhile his own congregation at 
Christ Church responded well to his frequent 
appeals, and he was not content until their annual 
contribution had reached 1000. 

" But the most remarkable of his efforts of the 
kind was in 1884-5. The Society was sorely pressed 
for office room, the work having so greatly increased 
since its house was built in 1862 ; but the committee 
were not willing to apply missionary contributions 
to its enlargement. Then Mr. Bickersteth, inde 
pendently of them, published a proposal that 
substantial sums (say 250, but not less than 100) 
should be given by friends * in memory of departed 



MISSIONARY 167 

brothers and sisters in Christ, whose names, thus 
commemorated, should be inscribed on a tablet in 
the house. The response exceeded his anticipations. 
In less than twelve months 18,000 was thus con 
tributed, which not only paid the whole cost of 
enlargement, but substantially reduced an old 
mortgage also. The new whig, so provided, had 
a personal interest for him ; for it stood on the site 
of the old hired house occupied from 1813 to 1862, 
the house in which his father, Edward Bickersteth, 
the secretary, had lived for some years. 

II 

"Although we take the Bishop s utterances 
regarding Missions under a separate head, very 
many of them might well be reckoned among his 
services to the C.M.S. He was three times a 
speaker at the Annual Meeting; and the other 
contemporaries of his who spoke as often were 
J. C. Miller, J. C. Ryle, E. Hoare, and Archbishop 
Temple. (In earlier days, when there were fewer 
men to be asked, there were some who spoke 
oftener.) 

" He presided at the Evening Meeting of 1885, 
just after his consecration, and only the day before 
he left London for Exeter. The Annual Sermon 
at St. Bride s, which only one man in the whole 
century has preached twice (Bishop Wilson, of 
Calcutta), was delivered by Bishop Bickersteth 
in 1888. His subject was The Gospel of the 
glory of the Blessed God, which was committed to 
my trust (1 Tim. i. 14, R.V.) ; and from the 
words committed to my trust he drew an 
appeal for personal service in the mission field 
which has never been surpassed, if ever equalled, 
for tender yet forceful earnestness. He did not even 
shrink from facing the possible question, Why 



168 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

don t you go yourself? affirming his readiness 
to go if plainly called by his Divine Master even 
then, when he had attained the age at which his 
father had died. Other sermons of his on special 
occasions are still remembered: at St. James s, 
Paddington, for instance, in 1881, at the ordination 
of four missionaries, when he rendered St. Peter s 
word for love, in St. John xxi. (^tXw), cleave 
unto, after the usage of the Septuagint, and again 
at Lambeth Palace Chapel in 1883, at the consecra 
tion of A. W. Poole as first English Bishop for 
Japan, when from St. Mark iii. 14, 15 the 
account of the first ordination he drew the 
threefold duty of the Christian ministry, viz. 
to be with Jesus, to preach His word, and to do 
His works. 

"But perhaps the occasion of speaking at a 
C.M.S. function which gave him deepest satisfaction 
was the Second Jubilee Meeting, on November 1, 
1898. 1 He had been present as a young clergyman 
at the First Jubilee Meeting in 1848, and now he 
was privileged to occupy the chair at the Second 
Jubilee. As far as was known, only two other 
persons were present who had also been present 
in 1848, and both of them spoke, viz. the Rev. 
W. Salter Price (the East African missionary) 
and Mr. Eugene Stock. It was an occasion 
which drew forth all the tender thankfulness 
and sympathetic joy which always characterized 
the Bishop. 

Bishop Bickersteth took no narrow view of 
the Church s missionary agencies. Although his 
hereditary connexion was with the C.M.S., and 

1 The first Jubilee was celebrated in the middle of the fiftieth year, 
not at its close. It was therefore arranged to hold a second Jubilee 
meeting on the corresponding day in the hundredth year (November 1), 
in anticipation of the centenary celebration in the following April, 
when the century was complete. 



MISSIONARY 169 

his sympathies were with its work first of all, he 
was no half-hearted or hesitating friend of the 
S.P.G., and in the Exeter diocese he promoted its 
interests with equal fervour. Even if he had not 
valued, as he truly did, its great work both in the 
Colonies and in non-Christian lands, the fact of 
the Cambridge Delhi Mission, founded by his 
eldest son, being affiliated to the S.P.G., would 
of itself have secured his co-operation for the 
Society. His hearty wish was to see all the 
Church Societies drawn more together, not by 
Utopian schemes of amalgamation, but by ever- 
increasing mutual appreciation and respect. 

"So devoted was the Bishop to the cause of 
Evangelization, that he could not refuse sympathy 
to any sincere effort to preach Christ to the 
heathen. He could not confine that sympathy 
within the bounds of the Church of England, dearly 
as he loved it ; and when the last great General 
Conference on Missions was held in 1888 almost 
all Protestant Societies being represented Dr. 
Bickersteth was the one English Bishop who saw 
his way to take part, coming up from Exeter 
expressly for the purpose. 

Bishop Bickersteth was frequently invited to 
take part in the Church Congress. Generally, 
and naturally, the place allotted to him was in the 
session devoted to the consideration of the spiritual 
life, or the Ministry; but at Wakefield, in 1896, 
he contributed a remarkable paper on a burning 
missionary question, the Baptism of Polygamists. 
On this subject the Bishop held a view different 
from that most common among missionaries, and 
indeed among Churchmen generally. The problem 
is not so easy as might be imagined. Of course, 
any baptized Christian taking more than one wife 
would be excommunicated, upon that all are 
agreed. But suppose a heathen chief were 



170 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

converted who has three wives already, all lawful 
wives according to the custom of the country ; 
and suppose, as Bishop Bickersteth put it, the 
first in order of time is old and childless, the 
second the mother of all his children, the third, 
the last married and best beloved." If he is to 
put away two of the three before baptism, which 
is he to keep ? And what is the condition of the 
two put away ? Are they to be counted as married 
or single? Can they marry other men? And 
what of the children (if any) of those put away ? 
The Bishop advocated a certain liberty in such 
circumstances. He took the same line at the 
Lambeth Conference of 1888, and was supported 
by several other Bishops. But the majority was 
against him. By 83 votes to 21, the Conference 
decided that a converted polygamist should not 
be baptized, but should continue a catechumen 
until he should be in a position to accept the law 
of Christ, but on the other hand, by 54 to 34, 
that the wives of polygamists might be baptized in 
certain circumstances to be decided on locally. 

"At the Folkestone Congress, in 1892, the 
Bishop was again invited to read a paper on a 
Missionary subject, * Variety of Methods, in 
which he showed his intimate knowledge of the 
actual circumstances and problems of the Mission 
field." 



CHAPTER VIII 

1900-1906 

Resignation Diocesan Conference Resolutions Freedom of the City 
of Exeter Removal to London Illness Death Tributes 
Recapitulation. 

" Be the day short or never so long, 
At length it ringeth to evensong." 

From JOHN HBYWOOD S 
" Collection of English Proverbs/ 1546. J 

THE Bishop had a sharp attack of influenza in 
the early spring of 1900, which greatly weakened 
him. And although he resumed work with his 
usual ardour, the severity of the strain upon his 
powers soon became evident. The summer holiday 
of this year did not bring him its wonted renewal 
of vigour, and he felt that he must face the 
question of retirement. In September he sent in 
his resignation to the Archbishop of Canterbury, 
who forwarded it to Lord Salisbury. He received 
a very kind letter from the Prime Minister signi 
fying his regret for the cause which led the Bishop 
to relinquish his office, together with warm ex 
pressions of personal regard. He retired on a 

1 In Heywood s book the couplet is given thus : 

" Be the day never so long 
Evermore they ring to Evensong." 

As given in the text the words were used at the moment of his death by 
George Tankerville, who was burnt at the stake in 1555. 

171 



172 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

proportion of the income of the see, which was 
considerably less than the amount allowed by 
statute under the Bishops Resignation Act. 

The pain of parting from many whom he loved 
weighed heavily upon his spirit ; but the strong 
hold to which he had resorted for more than three 
score years was his place of refuge, and he took 
shelter there as the shadows of life s evening and 
the sorrows of superannuation gathered about him. 

The tidings that the Bishop had resigned 
occasioned universal regret, and the diocese rose 
up and called him blessed. The most affecting 
expressions of sorrow came from persons of all 
classes and creeds. There was not a parish in 
which there did not exist some link with its chief 
pastor not alone from persons who had been 
confirmed by him or had listened to his plead 
ings in sermons and addresses, for almost all the 
religiously minded knew the hymn, "Peace, per 
fect Peace," and many also his "Pray, always 
Pray." Letters came by the score testifying 
the depth and extent of the affection borne by 
the people of the Diocese towards their Father 
in God. 

The Bishop took a final farewell of his clergy 
and laity at the Diocesan Conference which met 
on October 16th. In his parting address he dwelt 
upon the years spent by him in their midst, 
mentioning by name a large number of those who 
had rendered signal help in the manifold depart 
ments of his work, and thanking them in words 
both graceful and discriminating, for all the kind 
ness he had received at their hands. 



CLOSING YEARS 173 

The Lord-lieutenant of the County, Lord 
Clinton, moved the following resolutions : 

" That the members of this Conference recog 
nize in the determination of the Lord Bishop to 
resign the charge of the diocese, evidence of the 
high sense of his obligation to his great office, and 
the maintenance of the high standard of public 
duty which he advocated in the days of his 
strength, and now vindicates in his advancing years. 

" They hear also with great regret of the failure 
of his health, and his increasing weakness. 

" They receive his decision with grateful recol 
lections of the courtesy, the devotion, the fairness 
of all his relations not only with the Diocesan 
Conference, but with the diocese at large. 

" They rejoice to think that in the fifteen years 
of his episcopate he has made himself acquainted 
with all classes of the community, and approved 
himself to all as a true father in God. 

" They respectfully offer the assurance of their 
enduring regard for all the members of his family, 
who have united with him in making the Palace 
a scene of diocesan hospitality and a centre of 
good works. 

" They earnestly pray that the relief which the 
Bishop is seeking from the increasing burden of 
a diocesan episcopate may, by the will of Almighty 
God, issue in a prolonging of his days, and enable 
him to add to his services to the Church at large, 
in those fields of literature in which he has made 
for himself an enduring name." 

In supporting the resolution, the Archdeacon 
of Exeter said 

" The Lord-lieutenant has spoken with feeling, 
with dignity, and with eloquence to this motion, 



174- EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

and he has spoken, no one can doubt, as a religious 
man who is interested in the subject on which he 
has spoken. But he has of necessity spoken as 
a layman, and it is my duty and privilege in some 
way to represent the priests and the deacons. I 
am glad to do so, because I feel that the Bishop 
whom we honour, respect, and love, is a man who 
has done much to teach us clergy how we ought 
to obey the deepest duty which we owe to the 
laity, and to the people of this country and this 
nation. I say that advisedly, because what the 
people of this country consciously or unconsciously 
most desire at the hands of the clergy is something 
more than activity. They desire activity, no doubt, 
and they have had a very considerable amount of 
it during your lordship s episcopate. They desire 
also intellectual force, and they must have it ; but 
the thing which they most desire, whether they 
know it or do not, is neither the expression of 
energy or force, but manifestation on the part 
of the clergy of the life that is hid with Christ 
in God. What they most need is this mani 
festation of something which in this active, busy, 
material age speaks of the Heavens above, and 
leads men to lift up their hearts. And while your 
lordship has done a great deal more of active work 
than any one of us quite realizes, your words just 
spoken have brought out this higher service in a 
simple but in a very remarkable manner. The 
thing that you have taught the clergy is just this, 
that their chief aim must be to make the people 
feel that the clergy are men of God, and have 
spirituality of soul within them. 

"My lord, I say it in your presence all that 
you do is so simple and natural that I don t think 
we need be very particular about whether our 
words are spoken in your presence or not that 
you have been to many the best example of the 



CLOSING YEARS 175 

best kind of piety which we used to see among 
the best clergy in the days when we were young. 
It belongs to no party, it belongs to all parties. 
But I fear it is rarer now than it was in days 
gone by. This is activity. Thank God for it. 
But we want behind activity the piety which 
makes the activity tell. It has been my privilege 
to know a few of the leaders of the English 
Church. And there stand out two who are con 
spicuous for this very thing of which I am 
speaking. And it came to pass that these two 
men were on the selfsame day consecrated to the 
episcopate of the English Church. One was the 
saintly Bishop of Lincoln, and I am not afraid 
to canonize our own Bishop during his lifetime 
the other, was the saintly Bishop of Exeter. Men 
of different schools and different opinions in some 
respects (though I do not believe in very many), 
both showed what will be the greatest power in 
holding the English Church together in the days 
to come. It has been good for us, both clergy 
and laity, to have been here in this diocese during 
your episcopate. The diocese has been over 
shadowed by a courteous, gentle, heavenly influ 
ence, which has reached far and wide, and has 
penetrated to all sorts and conditions of men. 

" For there was in your words just spoken 
that which showed care not only for the great, 
but for the small, for the young as well as for 
the old ; and I am quite certain that in the days to 
come there will be many among the poorest of this 
county, and among the simple and least educated, 
who will cherish in their memories a sight which 
they once had of a Bishop, who was a true man 
of God, and the memory of words that have been 
a blessing to them ever since they first heard them 
uttered. I pray that this influence will long live 
the influence of that heavenly spirit and the 



176 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

influence of that loving heart. I pray that in the 
days to come, to which you have alluded the days 
of increasing activity that if in the midst of this 
activity we are tempted to lose something of the 
spirit of true Church fellowship, we may remember 
what we once saw of that spirit of love which 
held us all together. I believe, my lord, the legacy 
will still remain. I trust it may, and I hope and 
believe it will. I am quite certain you will not 
be forgotten, because it will be impossible to forget 
you and after you yourself have gone, the influ 
ence of your loving presence will still abide. 

A few weeks later, the Mayor and Corporation 
of Exeter conferred upon him the freedom of the 
City, the highest mark of distinction and appreciation 
which they could bestow upon any individual. 

It was said of him 

" His fatherliness and loving sympathy are in 
all our hearts and he is sorely missed. Few Bishops 
in a roll containing many great names have left so 
deep and abiding a mark for good, the impression 
of the mighty power of love and holiness." 

Another writes " I feel sure that no Bishop 
ever parted from his diocese more universally 
venerated and beloved than the Bishop of Exeter." 

The late Prebendary Bramley, Rector of 
UfFculme, and afterwards Sub-Dean of the 
Cathedral, wrote to him, " I have never forgotten 
the two days you spent with us at UfFculme, and 
the amount of good that you succeeded in doing 
during that time. It made a deep impression on 
me and on my people." Prebendary Bramley also 
wrote of him, " I hope we may get a good man to 



CLOSING YEARS 177 

succeed him. We shall not get one kinder, fairer, 
more earnest to help all that can promote our good." 

Another, a well-known layman, wrote, "The 
nearer the time comes for your leaving, the less I 
like to think of it. It will be the hardest wrench 
Exeter has received during many years. I am 
very, very sorry." 

There were also many most touching letters 
from his brother Bishops on his resignation. The 
Bishop of Southwark, Dr. E. S. Talbot, then Bishop 
of Rochester, wrote 

" You will have many letters just now, and per 
haps they will only add to sadness and weariness. 
But yet may 1 add one little one which will be 
answered only by a handshake when we meet (as I 
trust) at Lambeth in November. 

"For you have been too kind to me for the 
ending of your time amongst our brotherhood of 
active service to pass, without a word of affection 
and respect and gratitude from me. It was you 
who told me that I should find a real brotherliness 
in the Episcopal body, and you have always done 
your part to help me feel the truth of this. 

" We shall miss a presence not only ever kindly 
and gentle, but always a reminder of the spirit 
which should go through all our business and work. 
I do trust that the comfort of the Holy Spirit will 
make the sadness of ending and leaving to be 
conquered by thankfulness and hope. 

" Pray give those whom you leave the full help 
of the reservists service of prayer, and not least 
one who so greatly needs it as myself." 

The Bishop removed to London in December, 
1900, and took a house in Westbourne Terrace 

N 



178 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

(No. 95), when it was hoped that a period of entire 
repose might restore him to a greater measure of 
strength. For a time it seemed as if this expecta 
tion would be realized. He could enjoy the society 
of his friends, go out to meetings, and was able to 
begin some literary work in the way of preparing 
his " Thoughts in Past Years," a book of occasional 
sermons for publication. 

He was able also to take part in the consecra 
tion of his successor, Dr. H. E. Ryle, on his own 
birthday, January 25, 1901. But the improve 
ment was not sustained, and the illness which was 
to last for more than five years gradually became 
worse. But he accepted the will of God concern 
ing him with perfect submission and with childlike 
trust. 

" Still loving man, still thanking God." 

He was fond of repeating some lines from a 
hymn of John Newton s, which he had known from 
his early days 

" He that hath led me hitherto 
Will lead me all my journey through, 
And give me daily cause to raise 
New Ebenezers to His "praise." 

The warning that the end was approaching 
came a week beforehand, like the Seer s in " Yester 
day, To-day and For Ever," and at 6.30 on the 
morning of May 16, 1906, in the presence of 
those dearest to him, the gentle loving spirit of 
Edward Henry Bickersteth took its flight and 
went home to God. 

A simple but beautiful service was held at 
Christ Church, Lancaster Gate, and attended by 



CLOSING YEARS 179 

a large and representative congregation of those 
who had worked with him at different times of his 
life. His hymn, "Peace, Perfect Peace," was 
sung, and the pall borne by eight of his grandsons. 
He was laid to rest amongst his kindred at 
Watton, where the Bishop of Crediton read the 
concluding prayers and pronounced the benedic 
tion. Amongst those gathered round the grave, 
were some aged people from the village who 
remembered him when he lived there as a boy. 

Of the many tributes paid to the Bishop s 
memory in his old Diocese, two may be selected 
as expressing the sentiment which the tidings of 
his death evoked in many places. The first is by 
Chancellor Edmonds, preaching in the Cathedral 
at Exeter on the Sunday after his death, and the 
other from a sermon by the Rev. W. H. Coates, 
Vicar of Christ Church, Plymouth, a former Curate 
of the Bishop s at Christ Church, Hampstead. 

At the conclusion of his sermon Canon 
Edmonds said 

"As we think here to-day of him who was 
gathered to his fathers yesterday, it is easy, it 
is pleasant to recall him. His gracious gentle 
ness, his saintly ways were not passive things ; 
they were the veil behind which there lay quietly 
active, high qualities of judgment and discern 
ment, practised in other spheres among many 
types of men. We are accustomed to think of 
ours as an age of transition. So, also, was his. 
One of the world s own prophets speaks of himself 
and his contemporaries as brought up and nursed 
in hours of change, alarm, surprise. 

" His years of middle and later life were such 



180 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

a time. But he had found shelter in a congenial 
ministerial sphere to grow ripe, and by early rising 
he made leisure to grow wise. His father and he 
touched each other to the finer issues of life, yet 
not at all points. He and his Bishop-son, into 
whom he once said, in my hearing, that * he had 
poured his soul, touched each other as closely. 
Yet not at all points. What was common to the 
three was common to us all. Theirs, indeed, it 
was, measured by whatever standard we please to 
apply to them, to live among men as men of God. 
That is the life that tells ; those are the labours 
that are not in vain. 

" There is extant a fragment of biography, current 
ninety years ago, in which, at the western extremity 
of Cornwall, a well-known lady writes in her journal 
of the Bishop s father, that she had gone into Pen- 
zance to a missionary meeting with Mr. Bickersteth, 1 
The glory of God, she said, and the good of souls, 
everything that was holy, heavenly, and delightful, 
I felt in his conversation. Oh, it makes me long 
after holiness and heaven to meet with such, and 
I seem raised from the earth I dwell on.* Well, 
brethren, during the fifteen years of Bishop Bicker- 
steth s episcopate he visited all but every parish 
in the diocese. In large numbers of them he 
stayed a night, and where he stayed, he left, when 
he went away, a blessing behind him. His visits, 
half fatherly, half brotherly, were the visits of a 
shepherd of souls : he gained entrance, as St. 
Paul calls it, for himself. He valued that, but 
he valued it all the more because it gave him the 
opportunity of gaining an entrance for his Lord. 

" He will live in the hearts of all who knew 
him. He will live in them for the best reasons. 
We love men for many reasons, we love men in 
various degrees, but we love those most who give 

1 Diary of Mrs. Lydia Grenfell. 



CLOSING YEARS 181 

our lives a lift heavenward, and this Bishop Bicker- 
steth did, and was always doing. His place is in 
men s hearts, and he will keep his place. To him 
it has been given to write some hymns that the 
world will not willingly let die. His place in 
devotional poetry is with the immortals. As long 
as human life has sorrows or human hearts have 
grief, so long will hymns of his be part of the 
medicine of the Comforter, so long will Peace, 
Perfect Peace, be found on the lips of those who 
are called to bear the inevitable discipline, of 
affliction and separation, of sorrow and of death. 

" Brethren, will the coming days produce in the 
various ranks of men teachers and scholars like 
these? Shall we produce young apostles ready 
to fill the world with the cry of * Obedience, 
obedience ? " Shall the fathers to the children 
continue to proclaim the truth ? Shall men come 
before God, with their sons and daughters at their 
feet, and say, Behold me and the children whom 
Thou hast given me? At this moment of em 
bittered controversy we may well ask the question, 
as we turn away from the little country church 
yard where loving hands and loving hearts have 
paid their last public homage to Edward Henry, 
Bishop once of Exeter, husband, father, priest, 
Bishop, and in all relationships a man of God, a 
child of the most gracious influences of the past, 
a herald in prose and in verse of better things to 
come." 

In the course of his sermon at Christ Church, 
Plymouth, Mr. Coates said 

" In the days when I was his senior curate, 
from 1878 to 1885, Hampstead was one of the 
most important suburbs of the great City of 
London. It was not only celebrated for its beauty, 



182 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

but was above all things noted for the number 
of celebrated men and women, who made it their 
home. Art, literature, drama, Parliament, science, 
and law had many of their leading representatives 
dwelling there. Hence it came to pass that Christ 
Church, Hampstead, then held an almost unique 
position amid the Churches in the north-western 
part of the metropolis. It was in such a place, 
and to such a people, that Edward Henry Bicker- 
steth ministered for thirty years ; and there can 
be no greater tribute to the extraordinary power 
of his wonderful life than that he should have held 
together so large and intellectual a congregation, 
not by his learning, although he was undoubtedly 
a scholar, or even by his eloquence, but rather 
because of his transparent sincerity of purpose and 
his masterly grasp of those Holy Scriptures which 
he lived as well as preached. 

"Just below his pulpit was a pew which was 
generally occupied by those who had either come 
from, or were going out to, missionary work in 
foreign lands ; and it was a strange thing to watch 
those of different nationalities, black as well as the 
white, gazing up into that dreamy, heaven-lit face 
and being raised by his words and looks to a higher 
plane of spiritual conceptions, which should inspire 
them to purer lives and grander purposes. From 
that same pulpit I have heard the first public 
recitations of some of his most beautiful hymns ; 
and to hear those hymns read by the poet who 
knew so well the leading thought which he desired 
most to accentuate, was not easily to be forgotten. 

" But if as a preacher he was unique, as a 
pastor he was absolutely perfect in his consistency 
of conduct, his sympathy, and the almost child- 
likeness of his innocence. He was no recluse, 
and one of my most vivid and pleasant recollec 
tions of Hampstead is the remembrance of social 



CLOSING YEARS 183 

evenings in his hospitable house, where as a true 
gentleman he was seen at his best, talking and 
chatting with every one, and making everybody feel 
at home. Yet although in the world, he was not 
of the world. It was curious to see how, without 
the least affectation or cant, he was able to make 
his guests feel that it was an almost natural thing 
not to separate without a hymn and a word of 
prayer. * I used often to wonder how he did it, 
said a City merchant to me, but he was such a 
true saint of God we could not resent it, could we ? 
" But perhaps, it was more in the hour of trouble 
than at any other time that Bickersteth was so 
wonderfully helpful. There was nothing artificial 
in his sympathy. To be with him was just to 
feel as though he had nobody else s cares to 
think about and nobody else s sorrow to soothe. 
No one was better able to whisper words of hope 
about the great unseen than the author of Yester 
day, To-day and For Ever, who simply seemed to 
live in it ; and I suppose that no saint has ever 
himself departed into the Paradise of God with 
keener anticipation than the good Bishop, who now 
sees and experiences what he so often pictured and 
sang about. As his curate for so many years 
always made welcome under his roof, and ever 
permitted to enter into some of his most sacred 
confidences I can truly say of Bishop Bickersteth 
that to know him was to love him." 

The Bishop of Lincoln, Dr. Edward King, who 
was consecrated with him on April 25, 1885, wrote 
on hearing of his death 

" Old Palace, Lincoln, July 28, 1906. < 

" MY DEAR SIR, 

" I am so sorry that I have not thanked 
you for your kind note telling me of your dear 



184 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

good father s departure. We were consecrated 
side by side, and for many years interchanged tele 
grams on the 25th of April. I shall always think 
of him with sincere gratitude for the consistent 
example of his gentle and holy life. 

" With sincere sympathy, 
" Believe me, 

" Your s sincerely, 
" E. LINCOLN. 

"The Rev. H. V. Bickersteth." 

The Bishop of Crediton has kindly contributed 
recollections of Bishop Bickersteth in the following 
letter : 

"Exeter, July 4th, 1907. 

" DEAR AGLIONBY, 

"You ask me to write a short account 
of my recollections of our late revered Bishop. It 
is with a feeling of intense reverence, and appre 
ciation of his wonderful love both for God and 
his fellow-men, filling me as I write, as it must fill 
all who really knew him, whenever one thinks of 
him. His memory is still fresh throughout the 
diocese as one greatly beloved for his fatherly, 
prayerful, and saintly episcopate. 

" My first recollection of him was when he 
came for a Confirmation to my old parish. His 
simple sympathetic addresses appealed to the minds 
and thoughts of both candidates and congregation, 
and sent them home impressed with the solemnity 
of the service, and the effect it should have on 
their lives. On my asking him whether the long 
service tired him, he said, I could never go on 
with it unless I believed that the Holy Spirit was 
in every case given through the laying on of hands. 

" In his short stay for the night in our house, 
he showed himself indeed as our Father in God, 
with his homely family spirit, taking at once the 



CLOSING YEARS 185 

keenest interest in our own and the children s 
welfare, as well as in the work of the parish. 

" He also, at once, made all feel that his love 
for his fellow-men extended far beyond the limits 
of his own diocese, and how deep and wide was 
his missionary spirit. In writing to me on the 
subject and its connection with Cathedral life, he 
said, The third Canon should promote in every 
way the Foreign Missionary work of the diocese, 
both S.P.G. and C.M.S. For I deeply feel no 
diocese can prosper in spiritual life at home 
unless the great Evangelistic charge of our Lord 
(St. Matt, xxviii. 18-20) is earnestly fulfilled. 
For this purpose his candidates for Ordination were 
examined in some missionary subject and bio 
graphy, with the object of winning their interest, 
and supplying them with useful information at the 
beginning of their ministerial life. It was his 
earnest desire that every parish, and indeed every 
parishioner, should be imbued with the missionary 
spirit, as a means of promoting general spiritual 
vitality. 

" As one who later was closely associated with 
him in his work, not only as Canon, but as his 
Suffragan, when advancing years made his Episcopal 
duties more than he could undertake alone, I am 
glad to testify to the kindly courtesy and generous 
trustfulness of his dealings with those serving 
under him. Realizing fully his entire responsibility 
for all that was done in the diocese, he never gave 
over any part of his work to another without 
committing it and his fellow-worker in earnest 
prayer to God for His guidance and blessing on 
the undertaking. It was impossible not to feel 
the importance of a commission given in so solemn 
a manner. 

" Full of absolute sincerity and purity of mind, 
he was generous in his judgment of others, giving 



186 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

full justice to those who differed from him, making 
the most of each point of unity, and winning 
obedience to his wishes by the sheer force of his 
holy and fatherly personality. Even those in 
strong divergence of opinion from him speak with 
affectionate thankfulness of his quiet influence 
over them. 

"Yet with all his gentleness he was shrewd 
and tactful in dealing with men. He was quick 
to distinguish and value sincerity, but quick also 
to suppress anything that fell short of it. He 
was gifted also with a patient as well as a calm 
disposition. On one occasion he showed me a 
drawer in his study table full of unanswered 
letters. These/ he said, with a merry smile, 
* have all been acknowledged, and Time has been 
good enough to answer them for me ; they have 
the merit of having answered themselves. 

" In Exeter we shall never forget the influence 
of his home life. It was a palace where love 
and hospitality ruled with well-regulated and 
unquestioned force. All were welcomed there as 
part of the great diocesan family, and little children 
were specially invited and made much of. It is 
remembered by a lady, who was calling at the 
palace some years ago, that the Bishop came into 
the drawing-room to see her with my little girl, 
his godchild, then only a year old, sitting on his 
shoulder, happily drumming on his head with a 
teaspoon. No child ever turned from or was 
afraid to go to him. 

"There are other points which I feel should 
be mentioned, but I know they will already have 
been enlarged upon by other writers in your 
memoir. For instance, his poetic mind, which 
brought rhythm and poetry out of every event 
in his own and the nation s life, as well as his 
depth of thought and reading. I remember, when 



CLOSING YEARS 187 

in conversation with the late Earl Fortescue, not 
long before his death, he said to me, speaking of 
the Bishop s poetic mind and holiness of character 
and he was no mean scholar either * I think the 
charm of his Conference addresses was his pretty 
scholarship, and apt quotations from the writings 
of scholars. A reference to these addresses would 
show this to be the case. 

" I wish I could do more justice to the very 
real admiration and regard which I ever felt and 
ever shall feel for our late beloved Bishop. It 
was a real privilege to serve under one whose 
whole life was so completely dedicated to the 
worship and service of Almighty God, whose cha 
racter was so saintly, and whose every wish and 
aim was attuned to the mind and will of his 
Divine Master. 

" I am, dear Aglionby, 

" Yours sincerely, 

"ROBERT E. CREDITON." 

The following extract is from an article in the 
Record upon Bishop Ryle s translation in April, 
1903 :- 

"Bishop Ryle s two predecessors were in differing 
ways gifted men. One for strength, the other for 
tenderness, came soon to be distinguished. Arch 
bishop Temple pushed along, carrying work and 
workmen with him in an enthusiasm of labour, 
Bishop Bickersteth fell upon his people like dew. 
He came to the parishes and went his way, and 
those whom he visited found themselves refreshed." 

Although five years had passed away since the 
Bishop s withdrawal from public life, the great 
number of notices in the Press, and of allusions 



188 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

to him both in Churches and Chapels, especially 
in his old Diocese, showed that he was still held 
in loving remembrance. It is sometimes said that 
good men are very soon forgotten, and that their 
memories fade away : 

" Fast as the evening sunbeams from the sea." 

However much of truth there may be in this 
view, the death of Bishop Bickersteth shows us 
that men do remember, that they carry deep down 
in their hearts the recollection of those who have 
given them real spiritual help, who have been the 
means of bringing them nearer to God. And to 
him it had been granted in very large measure to 
do service of this kind. 

Any estimate of Edward Henry Bickersteth 
must take into account, first of all, the impression 
which he left upon the minds of his contemporaries. 
The ecclesiastical historian will not, perhaps, reckon 
him amongst the great Bishops of the Church ; but 
those who shall seek to gauge the deeper religious 
influences at work in the Church of England 
during the later years of the nineteenth century, 
will accord him a real recognition as being amongst 
those who wielded them. His gifts belonged to 
an order which is higher than that of intellectual 
brilliancy or organizing faculty, gifts which make 
the greatest display amongst men ; but spiritual 
power is, after all, the highest and most potent of 
God s gifts to His Church, and men everywhere 
were impressed with the Bishop s spirituality of 
mind ; they said to themselves concerning him ; 
" This is an holy man of God." 



CLOSING YEARS 189 

His gentleness, that hall-mark of true great 
ness, was manifest to all who ever met him : and 
linked with it, too, as in St. Paul s enumeration of 
the fruits of the Spirit was the sister grace of 
goodness, the perpetual disposition to do good 
everywhere and to every one. 

The Bishop was pre-eminently a man of prayer. 
It might be truly said that he would rise " when 
it was a great while before day," in order to 
redeem time for communion with God. He felt 
that " he must look into the face of God before he 
looked into the face of man : " and thus he " had 
power with God and with men." He would 
often quote the words, " The government is upon 
His shoulder," as referring to the never-failing 
providence of God and His superintendence over 
the affairs of His Church and people. It seemed 
perfectly natural when he said, as he would very 
often say of any matter in which he wanted 
guidance, "I will pray about it." And it was 
habitual with him to bring everything which he 
undertook to the Throne of Grace, every plan, 
every purpose, every perplexity. Hence his 
serenity, his sunny-heartedness, his cheerfulness, 
his courage, his childlike confidence that all things 
must work together for good. 

And then, there were his largeness of heart in 
prayer, his fervent and effectual intercessions, em 
bracing as they did, individuals, Churches, Parishes, 
enterprises of all kinds at home and abroad, " Church, 
King and Country," those who were preaching the 
everlasting Gospel to the heathen, watchers, workers, 
soldiers, sailors, the afflicted, the bereaved, the poor, 



190 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

the destitute. He once asked in an address to 
clergy, " Do you know what it is to wrestle an 
hour in prayer for a soul ? " His auditors felt that 
he knew it. It came out on another occasion, that 
he had continued for the whole night in prayer for 
a murderer on the eve of execution. 

He was also " mighty in the Scriptures," which he 
may be said to have studied on his knees. Through 
them the voice of God seemed to speak to him, 
and though not in the ordinary sense of the term a 
popular preacher, he spoke with a freshness and 
power which seldom failed to touch the hearts of 
those who heard him. 

It was no mere hearsay, for though he searched 
diligently and gathered knowledge of the sacred 
writings from many sources, he spoke, at first hand 
as it were, with meekness and humility but with 
strong conviction. " I believe, therefore have I 
spoken." And thus, firm on the rock and strong 
in God he could 

" Stretch out a loving hand 
To wrestlers with the troubled sea." 

His Commentary shows a wide and deep knowledge 
of the Holy Scriptures, and it was a matter for 
surprise that he found time to prepare it, amidst 
the pressure of parochial and public work ; and in 
addition to this he often had literary undertakings 
in hand, being for a time the editor of a Magazine 
known as Evening Hours. 

He was a staunch upholder of the older methods 
of interpretation, deprecating the adoption of the 
Revised Version for public worship, though he 



CLOSING YEARS 191 

valued it as a companion to the older translation. 
He naturally regarded the Higher Critics with a 
jealous vigilance, his motto being, "Prove all 
things ; hold fast that which is true." 

All who knew the Bishop well, were struck by 
his generosity. To quote his own words, he knew 
"the holy hilarity of giving." His was a nature 
which delighted to give of its resources to others, 
and it will never be known to how many he 
ministered in their necessities. His large gifts 
to Missions, and to other causes, benevolent and 
philanthropic, were mainly earned by strenuous 
toil of brain and pen. The grateful affection 
which came to him in return was " good measure, 
pressed down and running over." It was a well- 
spring of happiness to him, to "be a helper of 
many." 

Another trait which should be noted, was his 
love of children, whose hearts opened out to him 
as flowers to the sun. He introduced children s 
services in his Cathedral on Holy Innocents Day, 
when he would give the addresses himself. He 
revived the ancient custom in Exeter Cathedral 
of the Bishop blessing the choristers on the Great 
Festivals. He also welcomed them at the Palace 
on Christmas Eve, when they would sing carols 
after dinner and receive hospitality. Throughout 
life he kept the guilelessness and joyousness of 
childhood ; he had the child s heart. 

Method and diligence he carried into every 
thing, and his powers of work were unusual. Few 
assuredly would have fewer wasted hours to mourn 
when life s day was done. He did much of his 



192 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

reading on railway journeys, and, though active 
and alert, he never gave one the sense of being in 
a hurry. He exemplified a saying which he would 
now and then repeat, "Drive your work, do not 
let your work drive you." 

With a good business capacity and a clear head, 
he had the faculty of seizing the points at issue. 
Although too gentle and considerate to make 
a very successful chairman, he was firm when 
needful, and there were those who found beneath 
his mild exterior a foundation of adamant where 
moral and religious principle was concerned. In 
such cases he was inflexible and absolutely fearless ; 
he accepted no man s person. 

In social hours the charm of his personality was 
magnetic. His finely stored memory, his classical 
refinement of taste, his wide reading, his remini 
scences of travel, his winning courtesy, his keen 
sense of humour made him the centre of attraction 
in every circle. He greatly enjoyed a good story, 
and could tell one himself with inimitable grace. 
Some will remember his merriment when he 
described something which happened to him shortly 
after his appointment. In speaking of his pre 
decessor, he said that, " He was a crystal of many 
facets." In the next morning s paper he was 
reported as having said that "Dr. Temple was 
a Christian of many faces," a mistake which he 
corrected post-haste in a letter to the Bishop of 
London. 

On one occasion after a sermon by a well-known 
clergyman, he thanked the preacher, who said to 
him, "This is a sermon I preached thirty years 



CLOSING YEARS 193 

ago." " Indeed ? " replied the Bishop. " It reminds 
one of mummy wheat." 

His physical powers were above the average, 
and like many others thus endowed, he found 
recreation in turning from one pursuit to another 
quite as exacting as the one which he had left 
off. He also contrived to work on a very small 
allowance of sleep, being often up till long after 
midnight, and rising long before the busy world 
was astir, for his early communings with God. 

His energy was unwearied, but it never 
degenerated into fussiness ; it was tempered by 
geniality and kindliness, by unfailing consideration 
for others, and by extraordinary thoughfulness for 
their comfort. He had the tact and insight 
which come from love, and he would arouse in 
terest and even enthusiasm for work in unexpected 
quarters. 

For some years after his appointment as Bishop 
he enjoyed a game at tennis, rode, took long walks 
and climbed hills with a zest which does not often 
last until a man is sixty. The activity and pluck, 
shown by him whilst mounting the Eddystone 
in a rough sea, won the admiration of Sir Redvers 
BuUer. 

Although gifted with much shrewdness and 
sagacity, his judgments of men most often erred 
on the side of charity ; he would think too highly 
of them, and sometimes he was disappointed. But 
he never grew suspicious, far less cynical. A 
favourite saying from Paradise Lost was often on 
his lips, 

" Suspicion sleeps at wisdom s gate." 

O 



194 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

He believed that men were likely to become 
trustworthy if you trusted them. 

Now and then he mistook the meaning and 
intention of those with whom he had to do, where 
there were differences between them. He exagge 
rated points of agreement, and would persuade 
himself that they were nearer to his own way of 
thinking than they really were. This arose from 
"the charity which believeth all things," but 
which did not for the time take into account other 
factors of the case. It was a noble failing. His 
preferring others in love, his disposition " to make 
or find the best," will have appeared in his relations 
with those who did not see eye to eye with him in 
Church matters. For, after all, there is a mutual 
understanding, a holy freemasonry, as it were, 
between the souls of saintly men though they 
may be at opposite poles of theological thought, 
or move in very different zones of feeling and 
experience. In the presence of the Lord whom 
they love and serve, mistrust and suspicion melt 
away, barriers disappear and their oneness in 
Him is realized. When this has taken place 
there can be no abiding or serious estrangement 
afterwards. His intercourse with men like the 
Rev. G. R. Prynne, 1 the sainted High Church 
leader in Plymouth, was marked by much that 
was "lovely and of good report" on both sides. 
And by none of those who had been his clergy 
was his memory honoured with more rever 
ence and affection, than by many of those 

1 See the correspondence with the Bishop in the " Life of Mr. 
Prynne." 



CLOSING YEARS 195 

belonging to that school of thought in the Exeter 
Diocese. 

Alas ! for how many the world was poorer when 
he left it, and yet how different too for his having 
been with them, and for the holy example, the 
uplifting influence and the lessons of love and 
wisdom which he has left them. The words of one 
of his loveliest hymns will direct them to the waters 
of comfort during " the little while " which at the 
longest, must separate those on earth from those 
whose rest is won. 

" Till He come, Oh let the words 
Linger on the trembling chords ; 
Let the little while between 
In their golden light be seen ; 
Let us think how heaven and home 
Lie beyond that Till He come. 

When the weary ones we love 
Enter on their rest above, 
Seems the earth so poof and vast, 
All our life-joy overcast? 
Hush, be every murmur dumb ; 
It is only Till He come. 

Clouds and conflicts round us press ; 
Would we have one sorrow less ? _. 
All the sharpness of the Cross, 
All that tells the world is loss, 
Death and darkness, and^the tomb, 
Only whisper Till He come. 

See, the Feast of Love is spread, 
Drink the Wine and break the Bread, 
Sweet memorials till the Lord 
Call us round His heavenly board ; 
Some from earth, from glory some, 
Severed only Till He come/ " 

Such words may well bring to a close the story 



196 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of his own life, and may it be granted to all who 
have been helped by his influence, or inspired by 
his poetry, to follow in his footsteps and finally 
with him 

" To rest for ever after earthly strife 
In the calm light of everlasting life." 



FINIS 



APPENDICES 



APPENDIX I 

THE literary executors of the late Cardinal Newman have 
kindly placed at the disposal of the writer the following 
letters upon the subject of the additional verse to the hymn 
"Lead, Kindly Light " 

"The Oratory, June 20, 1874. 
" MY DEAR SIR, 

" I thank you very much for your kind letter and 
for your purpose of adding a note to your Hymnal on the 
subject of my verses. 

" I agree with you that these verses are not a Hymn, nor 
are they suitable for singing, and it is that which at once 
surprises and gratifies me, and makes me thankful that in 
spite of their having no claim to be used as a hymn, they 
have made their way into so many collections. 

" Thank you, too, for the beautiful memoir which you send. 
You have the greatest of consolations in your great trials. 
I am glad to have your little book, both for its own sake and 
as one of the many instances which are brought home to sad 
hearts, that the God of all grace has not forsaken us English 
in spite of our many sins. 

" Very truly yours, 

"JOHN H. NEWMAN. 
"Rev. E. H. Bickersteth." 

" The Palace, Exeter, September 3, 1890. 
"DEAR SIR, 

"You were good enough to correspond with me 
a year ago, on behalf of the late Cardinal Newman, regard 
ing his hymn " Lead, Kindly Light," to which I had ventured 
to add a verse in the first edition of my * Hymnal Companion 
to the Book of Common Prayer. 1 

" As I mentioned to you, I thought he had condoned my 
doing so in 1874, but I could not refer to his letter, as I 

198 



APPENDIX I 199 

had given it to my son who is Bishop of the Church of 
England in Japan. But I wrote to my son for a copy of the 
Cardinal s letter, which he has sent me, and you may possibly 
like to have the copy of it which I enclose, as the second 
paragraph so clearly expresses the author s own estimate of 
a hymn now so universally prized. And I think, the first 
paragraph of his letter will explain, how I thought I had 
received his tacit consent to my continuing to print my lines 
after his beautiful Lyric in my Hymnal, if I added a note, 
as I offered to do, saying the last verse was written by 
myself. This note I added in the second Annotated Edition. 
The verse was founded on the Collect for S. John the Evan 
gelist s Day, thus 

" Meantime along the narrow rugged path, 

Thyself hast trod, 
Lead, Saviour, lead me home in childlike faith, 

Home to my God, 
To rest for ever after earthly strife 
In the calm light of everlasting life." 

" And the Cardinal had been pleased to say in his first 
note on the subject how he liked the verse in itself. And 
this no doubt helped me to interpret the first paragraph of 
the letter which I enclose, as I did. The third revised and 
enlarged Edition of my Hymnal will be issued very shortly. 
The hymn "Lead, Kindly Light" appears very early in the 
book among those for Evening Prayer, verbatim as it was 
written, without abridgement or addition. And my verse, 
which has been for twenty years appended to it in my 
Hymnal, is now banished to the end of the volume among 
the doxologies, refrains and sequels. The prayer it breathes 
is one in which I feel sure we shall all agree. 

" Believe me, 

" Yours sincerely, 

E. H. EXON." 

" The Rev. Father W. P. Neville." 






APPENDIX II 

ON THE UNFINISHED EDITION OF THE 
COMMENTARY. 

THE Rev. H. V. Bickersteth, for ten and a half years 
Chaplain to the Bishop, writes as follows : 

"My father could not have been happy without some 
literary work on the stocks ; and so, when he had finished 
the third edition of his hymnal, in 1890, he soon commenced 
a task which occupied his intervals of leisure during the next 
few years, but which he was unable to complete. His plan 
embraced a fresh edition of his Commentary on the New 
Testament, with a careful review of the renderings of the 
Authorised Greek. To go deeply into matters of textual 
criticism would have involved deeper knowledge of the sub 
ject, and nearer access to libraries than he possessed. Time 
also forbade. 1 Though not himself in agreement with the 
Westcott and Hort theory, he practically let the text alone. 
He took the Authorised Greek as a basis, and then with 
great pains constantly weighed the renderings into English, 
with special references to any alterations in the 1611 version, 
made by the Revisers. The Revisers did not give their 
authorities, but the Bishop thought that if it could be shown 
that changes had received the support of such well-established 
versions, as WycliftVs, Tyndale s, CranmerX etc., the hasty 
criticism of some useful but apparently fresh translations 
would be disarmed. It is true that he started with a good 
deal of latent opposition to the 1881 revision, but it may be 
said that, though estimating it highly as a commentary from 
the first, after close and patient study he felt a growing 
thankfulness for much of the work done by these eminent 
scholars. The authorities which he chiefly used were : 



1 1C 



It is hard to get time to read," said he to his brother Bishop of 
Truro, looking fondly at his library shelves. " Well," said the other, 
" outside application is something." 

200 



APPENDIX II 201 

Wycliffe, Tyndale, Cranmer, Geneva, Rheims, Scholefield, 
Trench, Vaughan, Lightfoot, Chadwick, Ellicott, Burgon, 
Mayor, Miller, besides the judgments of other well-known 
commentators. He was genuinely diffident as to his labours, 
and expressed the view that if he could, under God, be the 
means of enriching the future Authorised Version of the 
English Bible, with but one or two renderings, he should 
feel more than repaid for his toil. And it was here that his 
felicity of diction, his pv8/j.oQ, was likely to be of use. A 
former Bishop of Exeter had enriched our language by his 
rhythmical version of the Psalms, which held the day when 
the Authorised Version of 1611 took the place of the Great 
Bible of 1540." 

Whether this would have been the result of any sug 
gestion made by Bishop Bickersteth it is impossible to 
say. No true work is thrown away, but to submit patiently 
to the providence which left ten years of toil in an 
unfinished condition, involved the bearing of a cross of no 
light weight. 

Some examples of renderings which the Bishop suggested 
are given, as being of interest to students. 

I. In St. Matt. xi. 28, render ol KOTnwvrce, " Ye that are 
toilworn." 

II. In 2 Cor. iv. 17, render *a0 vTrepjSoArjv etc virepfloXriv, 
" A far, far more excellent." 

III. In 1 Thess. iv. 14, render roue KoifJwOevTaG Sia row 
!?<TOU, "Who were laid to sleep by Jesus. 1 

IV. In Jas. v. 16, render iroXv iffxytt Slijerte SIKCUOV ivtp- 
yov^t vi?, " Great is the force of a righteous man s wrestling 
prayer." 

V. Eph. v. 24. The verse might be rendered, " Grace be 
with all whose love for our Lord Jesus Christ is imperish 
able " (ev atfrOapcria). 

VI. In Rom. xvi. 25, render \p6voig CUWVIOIQ ataiyninivov, 
"Which hath been kept in silence during times eternal" 
(measurable by ages). 

VII. TrXoTov, ir\oidpiov, vavg. It is difficult to translate 
these words in the New Testament so as to mark the distinc 
tion between them, but it seems best to render -nrXotov, "boat," 
on the small inland Sea of Galilee (See Tyndale, Revised 



202 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Version, etc.), and the same word "ship" on the Mediterranean 
Sea, e.g. in Acts xxvii. 2, where TrXotov is equivalent to 
vavg, a vessel which we are told (in verse 37) held 276 
persons. And TrXom^tov should always be rendered "a 
little boat." 

VIII. In St. Matt. ii. 6, render irotjuava, " who shall shep 
herd." For this use of " shepherd," cf. " Shepherding his 
bright fountains " (Shelley, Arethusa, ii. 262) ; also Rev. ii. 
27, where Trotjuatvet implies inflexible righteousness, but the 
rod of iron is held in the hand of One who has a Shepherd s 
heart. 

IX. In St. Matt. iv. 6, juijTrore indicates rather the unex 
pectedness of an occurrence than the uncertainty of the time 
when it may occur. It is here rendered " lest peradventure " 
(Wycliff); "lest perhaps" (Rheims); but "lest haply" 
(R. V.) well represent it in most places. 

X. In St. Matt. viii. 20, render Karao-xjv(u<Tae, " roosts ; " 
cf. " He clapped his wings upon his roosts " (Dryden). 

XI. In 1 Pet. iii. 18, render Trpotrayayy, " give access ; " 
cf. Rom. v. 1, 2. 

XII. In 2 Cor. v. 19, render TOV \6yov TTJC icaraXXayijc 
(with Tyndale, Cranmer, Geneva), "the preaching of the 
atonement." 

XIII. Acts viii. 30, apa 76 ytvoWae a avayivwmcae. We 
cannot retain in an English translation the condensed 
thought and beauty of this question : " It is well thou art 
thus engaged ; but does thy heart read what thine eye is 
reading ? " 

XIV. In St. John xi. 50, "Ye know nothing at all." 
Not an imputation of crass ignorance, but of lack of pene 
tration. 

Also, St. John i. 11 : " That which was His own," and 
" They that were His own," which brings out the distinction 
between ra tSta and ot ISioi. 

XV. In Rom ii. 18, render Karrjx V ( ei oe, " being schooled 
in " (cf. Shakespeare). 

XVI. Many instances might be given where slight altera 
tions are suggested to save rhythm, such as Acts vii. 40, 
" We wist not what," instead of " wot not what." 






APPENDIX II 203 

In St. Luke ix. 12, render K\IVEIV, " draw towards sunset, 11 
instead of " wear away, 11 avoiding the repetition of " away. 11 

Rom. viii. 19, render aTroKapaSoiaa, " earnest expectance, 1 
for euphony s sake, before the words " creation " and " reve 
lation, 11 in the same verse. " Expectance " and " expectancy " 
are used by Shakespeare and Milton. 



APPENDIX III 

THE following brief note on Bishop Edward Bickersteth, 
of South Tokyo, from the pen of Mr. Eugene Stock, will 
be of interest to those who have not read the life of him 
by his brother, the Rev. Dr. Bickersteth, Vicar of Leeds, 
which was published in 1899 : 

" Edward Bickersteth, Fellow of Pembroke, Cambridge, 
had been stirred up by intercourse with that distinguished 
missionary, T. Valpy French, to devote himself to a mission 
ary career, and had been led also, by French, to plan a 
brotherhood (without vows) of Cambridge men, which should 
form a strong and concentrated Mission, in affiliation with 
one of the recognized societies. Leading men at the Uni 
versity, Lightfoot and Westcott at their head, formed them 
selves into a committee for the purpose of supporting such a 
mission ; and eventually it was arranged to make Delhi the 
centre of work, and to establish the * Cambridge Mission to 
Delhi, in connection with the S.P.G. 

" The first party, headed by Edward Bickersteth, went 
out in 1877. Amongst its members were Mr. Lefroy (now 
Bishop of Lahore) and Mr. Allnutt (now Head of the 
Mission). The Mission from the first excited much interest, 
and it has always been regarded as, in many ways, a pattern 
of judicious organization and vigorous work. It has been 
the prototype of other efforts such as the Oxford Mission 
to Calcutta, and the Dublin University Missions in Chota 
Nagpore (S.P.G.) and Fuh-Kien (C.M.S.). 

"In 1885 Bishop Poole, of Japan, having died in the 
second year of his episcopate, Archbishop Benson appointed 
Edward Bickersteth to the vacant see. 

" For twelve years the new bishop did admirable service in 
Japan, particularly in the establishment of two Associated 
Missions, St. Andrew s for men,. and St. Hilda s for women, 
on the lines already well tested at Delhi ; also in the forma 
tion of the Nippon Sei-Kokwai, the Japanese Church in 

204 



APPENDIX III 205 

communion with the Churches of England and America. He 
was a real missionary statesman, who won the confidence of 
the C.M.S. as well as of the S.P.G., and in whose career the 
Bishop of Exeter found one of the greatest joys of his life. 

" But this was not the only family link of the Bishop s 
with the mission field. It was again and again a cause of 
unfeigned satisfaction to him to see one and another of his 
family circle going forth in the name of the Lord. Two of 
his sisters, widows, were Mrs. Durrant and Mrs. Cook. In 
1876, the stepson of the former, the Rev. G. B. Durrant 
(now a Secretary of C.M.S. in Salisbury Square), went to 
India. In 1894 Mrs. Durrant herself, the Bishop s sister, 
went in advancing years to India, accompanied by her 
daughter, Miss Emily Bickersteth Durrant, and followed 
two years later by her son, the Rev. H. B. Durrant. In 
1896 and 1899, two sons of Mrs. Cook, Drs. A. R. and J. H. 
Cook, went to Uganda as medical missionaries. All six were 
in connexion with the C.M.S." 



APPENDIX IV 

THE following passages from the Bishop s Charges of 1888 
and 1895 illustrate his views upon subjects which are of 
more than transient and local importance. 

" Daily Services, The Clergy in Country Parishes, and 
Home Reunion. 

"1. DAILY SERVICES. The humblest house of prayer 
ought, save with rare exceptions, to have its daily service and 
its weekly celebration of the Holy Communion. Many of the 
clergy seem to think this is impossible in their parishes ; their 
churches are far away from the bulk of the inhabitants ; a 
daily service, they say, would only be attended by the mem 
bers of their own family, and perhaps two or three aged 
neighbours; and as to a weekly Communion, they find it 
difficult to gather their communicants around the Holy Table 
once a month. 

U " Now, here I would remind you the Preface to our Prayer 
Book says: All priests and deacons are to say daily the 
Morning and Evening Prayer, either privately or openly, not 
being let by sickness or some other urgent cause. And the 
curate that ministereth in every parish church or chapel, 
being at home and not being otherwise reasonably hindered, 
shall say the same in the parish church or chapel where he 
ministereth, and shall cause a bell to be tolled thereunto 
a convenient time before he begin, that the people may come 
to hear God s Word and to pray with him. 

"I know that this habit has widely fallen into disuse. 
But, I ask, has the disuse tended to the greater devoutness 
of our people ? I trow not. Is family prayer (and I should 
be sorry indeed to do anything that would weaken that great 
bond of home piety) but is family prayer so general that 
it supplies all who desire it with the daily opportunities of 
united worship ? I trow not. Is the Morning and Evening 
Prayer said privately in their own homes by those who fail to 
say it in Church ? I trow not by most clergymen. There is 

206 



APPENDIX IV 207 

something to my mind inexpressibly dreary and desolate 
in the house of God being closed from Monday mornino- 
to Saturday night. A closed church repels rather than 
attracts the heart s best sympathies. And, on the other 
hand, the very fact of the house of prayer being opened day 
by day, and the church-going bell being tolled, and the little 
company of suppliants being known to assemble together for 
worship, has a quiet but deep influence on the minds of 
others. Be it that only two or three are there, the prayer of 
St. Chrysostom has lost nothing of its virtue by the lapse of 
years ; the Saviour s promise is pleaded, and will not be 
pleaded in vain. Who does not gratefully think of Anna in 
the temple ? The little rivulet of prayer swells the great tide 
of supplication, which is arising from the church militant 
night and day. And the numbers of worshippers will 
increase. Children will become used to the devout custom. 
In times of illness and anxiety at home, other members of 
the family will be found stealing into the church that they 
may join in the prayers offered for the sufferer. So times of 
deliverance will claim united thanksgiving. By degrees the 
church would vindicate its name more and more as the house 
of prayer. It may take the lifetime of a generation fully to 
revive the use of the daily office ; but the lifetime of a gene 
ration is a short period in the history of a church. 

" I have spoken of the house of God being open for daily 
service. But why should it ever be closed from morning 
to night ? It is not that I view private prayer to be of more 
avail in God s house than in our own homes. But there are 
many, especially in our large towns, though not in these only, 
who cannot make a solitude and silence for devotion in their 
own homes ; and it seems only right that the house of prayer 
should be available for their use. I remember how earnestly 
the revered Hugh McNeile, when a pastor in Liverpool, 
advocated this, saying that many of the working classes found 
it so hard to obey our Master s command, * But thou, when 
thou prayest, enter thou into thy closet, and when thou hast 
shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret. Per 
haps they have a large family and only one or two rooms, 
and find it difficult indeed to secure a quiet corner for prayer 
and study of the Word. But in going forth to their work or 
returning at nightfall, or even at the noonday meal time, 
they can snatch a few minutes for thought and prayer in the 
courts of the Lord s house. Surely, if this usage became 
general among us, a new glory would clothe the promise, 



208 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Mine house shall be called a house of prayer for all 
people. 1 

" 2. THE CLERGY IN COUNTRY PARISHES. At the very 
commencement of his episcopate, the Bishop was met by the 
difficulty of all dioceses with large rural districts, namely, the 
existence of very small parishes and the consequent lack of 
work for the parish priests in charge. Thus, according to 
the last census, there are twenty-three parishes with less than 
one hundred souls, sixty-one with more than one hundred 
and less than two hundred, sixty-three more than two hun 
dred and less than three hundred souls. And this impression 
has been accentuated and emphasized by the complaints to 
me of some excellent clergymen who long to spend and be 
spent for Christ, that they hardly know how to fill up their 
time. They have said that in the course of one or two days 
every week they can visit every parishioner they think it wise 
and well to visit ; there are not enough children to form a 
parochial week-day school, and on Sunday the worshippers 
are so few, they feel it difficult to rouse themselves for due 
preparation. They are active, and strong, and willing, but 
there is not enough to be done. Time hangs heavy on their 
hands. 

" Now this is a real and practical evil which ought to be 
grappled with and overcome. Mental and moral sinews 
unused become useless. 

" I quite admit that it may be a serious question with 
such brethren, whether they are right in continuing to hold 
a pastoral charge which seems below the powers with which 
the Master has gifted them, when the Church, both at home 
and abroad, is crying out for labourers in fields white to the 
harvest. But many have carefully weighed this question, 
and are persuaded, so far as they can read the signs of God s 
providence, they are working where He would have them 
work. 

" I would then remind them that in the quiet of their 
life they may especially cultivate the garden of their own 
souls. How often, in large, overgrown parishes, are pastors 
complaining, They made me keeper of the vineyards, but 
mine own vineyard have I not kept. Well has a modern 
student said, * The character of Christian life in our own time 
is rather humane than devotional, its tendency rather out 
ward than upward, its utterance rather in works of mercy 
than in songs of praise. Have we not all to be on our 



APPENDIX IV 209 

guard, that we do not make our worship merely public 
service, and so fail to make our service worship ? In our 
own free age and country, when opportunities for doing good 
are so multiplied, when there is not a talent or a grace but 
may find its own full and appropriate exercise in the great 
field of work, may we not learn something from the men 
of those more fettered days, when Christian life, hemmed 
in on all sides but one, rose with all its force towards the 
heavens, from which no human tyranny could shut it out ? 
And thus may we learn more to seek communion with God, 
not merely as the strength for work, but as the end and 
crown of all work ; not chiefly as the means of life, but its 
highest object. At least, my brethren, let not the Master 
have occasion to say to any who long for more work, * What, 
could ye not watch with me one hour ? 

" And then, suffer me to remind you, as I would remind 
myself, of the awful value of one soul for whom Christ died, 
one living soul, that mysterious microcosm in which the con 
flict between light and darkness is being waged, and the new 
creation must be wrought in the man, or woman, or child 
that is born of God. And you are shepherding one, or two, 
or three hundred such souls. You are watching for them as 
those that must give account. God grant that you may go 
before them, and lead them day by day to the green pastures 
and still waters, and bring them at last to the heavenly fold. 

"But even when the utmost heed is given to personal 
religion and pastoral work, how often in such small parishes 
much of priceless time and strength remains; and the 
question has weighed heavily upon me, how can this surplus 
of mental and spiritual force in willing labourers be utilized 
for the glory of God and the service of His church ? " 

Then, after enumerating the list of large and overgrown 
parishes in the diocese seventeeen, for instance, with between 
five and ten thousand he added : 

"Now, I venture to ask you, if the superabundant 
strength of the clergy in small parishes cannot be laid as 
a votive offering at Christ s feet, to redress in some measure 
this great inequality of labour. I should be very sorry to 
see parishes reduced to a dead level in numbers, or to have 
the ancient landmarks removed. But I believe much might 
be done by brotherly counsel and co-operation, Our rural 
deaneries, which are such an increasing power in the Church 

P 



210 EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

of England, supply the framework ; and ruridecanal chapters 
would afford the opportunities for arrangements. 

" If every clergyman who is in charge of a small parish 
would undertake some work for which he is especially quali 
fied, or for which he could by prayer and pains qualify him 
self, his talent would not long be buried. Perhaps he 
would take up 

" (a) Education in its manifold branches, mastering its 
details and its latest developments in schools for all classes, 
and being ready to respond to the request of any brother who 
might apply to him for advice and assistance ; or 

" (&) The great Social Questions of temperance, soberness, 
and chastity, and the kindred subject of healthful recreation, 
such as bell-ringing and choral unions ; or 

" (c) The Dwellings of the Poor and the kindred subject 
of Thrift; or 

" (d) Church History, which is our best and truest church 
defence, including the great and necessarv controversy with 
the fallen Church of Rome ; or 

" (e) Home Mission Work, as represented by the Church 
Pastoral Aid and Additional Curates 1 Societies ; or 

" (/") Missions to the Colonies and to the Heathen, as re 
presented by the Gospel Propagation and Church Missionary 
Societies. To make himself thoroughly acquainted with the 
work carried on in a single field of missionary enterprise, as 
Africa, or India, or China, or Japan, or America, or the 
islands of the Pacific, so as to be able to lecture upon it, 
might well engage the prayerful study of one labourer ; or 

" (g} Theology, that highest of all sciences : are there 
not resident among us masters in Israel at whose feet we 
would all gladly sit and learn ? or 

"(&) that which of all efforts demands the deepest 
humility, and the ripest faith, and the most Christ-like love 
of souls, I mean the conduct of Quiet Days, and Retreats, 
and Parochial Missions. 

" And in many of these works, my reverend brethren, 
you will be able to engage the willing co-operation of the 
laity ; they will be first your disciples, and soon your fellow- 
labourers. 

" Other subjects will suggest themselves to you ; one 
clerical friend could give a day, or two days, a week of pas 
toral visitation in the parish of an overburdened brother; 
another could take a weekly lecture; another could edit a 
ruri-decanal magazine. But the Apostle s words will abide 



APPENDIX IV 

with us all, As we have many members in one body, and 
all members have not the same office, so we being many 
are one body in Christ, and every one members one of 
another ; having then gifts differing according to the grace 
given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according 
to the proportion of faith ; or ministry, let us wait on our 
ministering ; or he that teacheth, on teaching. Let us 
settle it in our minds, the Church wants the gifts with 
which Christ has endowed every one of His servants; we 
shall then be prepared to listen to the Apostle s charge to 
Timothy, Neglect not the gift that is in thee. 

" 3. HOME REUNION AND THE REUNION OF CHRISTENDOM. 
The Grindelwald gathering of Churchmen and Nonconformists, 
convened on the basis of the Lambeth Conference proposals, 
Mr. Gladstone s article on * The Place of Heresy and Schism 
in the Modern Christian Church, the address of Lord Hali 
fax to the Bristol branch of the English Church Union, the 
Pope s recent Encyclical, have all drawn the thoughts and 
studies of Christian men to demand an answer to the ques 
tion, Why are the disciples of Christ so separated from one 
another ? The discussion will, I trust, give fresh urgency to 
our supplication, when we pray for the whole Church Militant 
here on earth, and beseech God to inspire continually the 
Universal Church with the spirit of truth, unity, and concord. 
But we cannot forget that truth comes before unity and 
unity before concord. We are trustees of the faith once for 
all delivered to the saints ; we cannot surrender it without 
breach of trust. 

" For example, we as Churchmen steadfastly believe that 
infant baptism is according to the mind of Christ ; we dare 
not forego it to secure corporate reunion with Baptist dis 
senters. We steadfastly believe in the historic episcopate as 
Christ s will and ordinance for the shepherding of His Church, 
we dare not put it aside to secure corporate reunion with 
Independent Nonconformists. We steadfastly believe in one 
Mediator between God and man, the Man Christ Jesus ; but 
we repudiate the mediatorship of the Virgin Mary and Saints 
in Paradise. We steadfastly believe that Christ is the Truth 
in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge 
and that all scripture is given by inspiration of God ; but we 
repudiate the infallibility of the Pope arid his decretals. We 
steadfastly believe that in the Holy Communion Feast, the 
souls of the faithful are strengthened and refreshed by the 



EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 

Body and Blood of Christ as their bodies are by the bread 
and wine ; but we utterly repudiate Transubstantiation in 
the Supper of the Lord. We pray from the heart that our 
brethren in the Confession of our one Lord and Master, 
though now overshadowed by so many grievous and perilous 
superstitions, may be drawn to the purer faith and freedom 
which we enjoy. They must come to us ; we cannot go to 
them. Be their invitations ever so persuasive, be their offers 
ever so attractive, * Quicquid id est, timeo Danaos et dona 
ferentes." 1 

" The thought that the disunion of Christendom is the 
great obstacle to the conversion of the world to Christ, 
no doubt weighs heavily on many hearts. I know it has 
often weighed on mine. But I would emphasize a convic 
tion that the intercession of our Great High Priest for the 
Unity of His people, when He said, Neither pray I for 
those alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me 
through their word, that they all may be one, as Thou, 
Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that the world may believe 
that Thou hast sent Me, has been progressively fulfilled 
during these long centuries of the Church s warfare in those 
who pass within the veil." 

" The architect who is building a magnificent cathedral 
may draw his granite stones, and massive monoliths, and 
precious marbles, from far distant quarries, where they have 
been hewn, and chiselled, and polished ; others may lie for a 
while alongside of each other without touching, beneath the 
shadow of the walls, while the structure is being builded ; 
but as they fill, one by one, their appointed places in the 
edifice, the symmetry of the design, which was from the 
first in the Architect s mind, begins by degrees to appear. It 
is not, however, until the work is finished that the irresistible 
fascination of oneness, myriads of stones forming one temple, 
is felt in all its power. Then multitudes flock from all lands 
to see, and admire, and imitate. So are all the Saints built 
upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus 
Christ Himself being the chief corner-stone, in Whom all 
the building, fitly framed together, groweth into a holy 
temple in the Lord for an habitation of God through the 
Spirit. 

"While the stones are being hewn and polished |in the 
quarries or workshop of the mason, there must needs be 
jarring sounds, and grinding frictions, and biting sculptures, 
and divers fragments scattered here and there, but as we read 



APPENDIX IV 

of Solomon s temple, the house, when it was in building, 
was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither, 
so that there was neither hammer nor axe, nor any tool of 
iron heard in the house while it was in building. So it is 
in the Paradise of the Blessed Dead. But when the top 
stone is brought forth, when Christ shall appear and His 
people with Him in glory, then shall the prayer of our 
Advocate with the Father be fulfilled ; then shall the Church 
of the First-Born be revealed as the Bride for ever one, and 
the world, attracted by that perfect unity, shall believe on 
the Eternal Son of God. I am persuaded we often take too 
limited a view of the designs unfolded in the Scriptures of 
truth. We do well to remember how very early in the 
development of the counsels of the Most High our lot is 
cast. One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a 
thousand years as one day. Of His own will begat He us, 
that we should be a kind of first-fruits of His creatures. 
The illimitable harvest is yet to come." 



Proposed Inscription for a Memorial Brass to the Bishop 
in Exeter Cathedral : 



To THE GLORY OF GOD 

and in loving remembrance of 

EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH, D.D. 

Vicar of Christ Church, Hampstead, 1855-1885, 

BISHOP OF EXETER 

A.D. 1885-1900. 

The only son of the Rev. Edward Bickersteth, 

Rector of Watton, Herts., born on the Festival of 

the Conversion of St. Paul, 1825, and called to his 

rest on May 16, 1906. 

He was a holy and humble man of heart ; 

As Parish Priest, watchful in the pastoral care of 
his flock and enthusiastic in missionary zeal ; 

As Bishop, a true father in God, strong in sym 
pathy, and tender in his rule ; 

As Poet, used of God to enrich the treasury of 
sacred song, comforting many by his hymn 
" Peace, perfect Peace." 



" Fervent in spirit, serving the Lord, rejoicing in 
hope, continuing instant in prayer." 



BIBLIOGRAPHY 

% 

WORKS BY EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH, D.D. 

Poems. 12mo. Seeley. 1848. 

Water from the Wellspring ; Meditation. 12mo. Religious 

Tract Society. 1852. 
Ezekiel, The Seatonian Prize Poem. 8vo. Bell and Daldy. 

1854. 

Sabbath Evening Dialogues. 18mo. Seeley. 1855. 
The Rock of Ages ; Scripture Testimony to Eternal Godhead 

of Father and Son, and Holy Ghost. 16mo. Religious 

Tract Society. 1860. 
Scripture Testimony to one Eternal Godhead. Post 8vo. 

Religious Tract Society. 1860. 
The Blessed Dead; What does Scripture Reveal? 12mo. 

Shaw. 1863. 
Practical and Expository Commentary on the New Testament. 

Virtue. 1864. 
Hades and Heaven; What does Scripture Reveal? 12mo. 

Shaw. 1865. 
Risen Saints ; What does Scripture Reveal ? 12mo. Shaw. 

1865. 
Yesterday, To-Day and For Ever; a Poem. Post 8vo. 

Rivingtons. 1867. 
The Spirit of Life ; or, Scripture Testimony. 8vo. Religious 

Tract Society. 1869. 
Hymnal Companion to the Book of Common Prayer. Low. 

1870. 

Two Brothers and other Poems. 12mo. Rivingtons. 1871. 
The Master s Home Call : a Memoir of Alice Frances Bicker- 

steth. 32mo. Low. 1872. 

215 



216 



EDWARD HENRY BICKERSTETH 



The Reef and other Parables. 8vo. Low. 1873. 

The Shadowed Home and the Light Beyond. 12mo. Low. 

1874. 
Hymnal Companion to the Book of Common Prayer. Second 

Edition, Revised. 1874. 
The Shadow of the Rock." Low. 1875. 
The Clergyman in his Home. 8vo. Low. 1876. 
The Master s Will ; a Sermon on the late Mrs. S. G. Buxton. 

32mo. Low. 1879. 
The Lord s Table ; or, Meditation on the Holy Communion. 

18mo. Rivingtons. 1882. 
Evangelical Churchmanship and Eclecticism. 8vo. Low. 

1883. 
From Year to Year ; Poems and Hymns. 16mo. Low. 

1883. 
Hymnal Companion to the Book of Common Prayer. Third 

Edition, Revised and Enlarged. 1890. 
The Feast of Divine Love ; or, the Lord s Table ; Meditation 

on the Holy Communion Office. 18mo. Low. 1896. 
Septett of Missionary Hymns and Music. Low. 1898. 
Thoughts in Past Years. Crown 8vo. Low. 1901. 



INDEX 



Adams, Professor, 12 

Allnutt, Rev. S. S. 143, 144, 204 

Arnold, Dr., 12 

Arnott, Miss, 150 

Athanasian Creed, Bickersteth s 

views as to, 43 
Atherton, Canon, 64, 88 

Banningham, Bickersteth appointed 
to, 15 ; his work at, 16-19 ; his 
visit to (1894), 86 

Barclay, Bp.,43 

Bardsley, Bp., 36 

Bateman, Rev. R., 145 

Benson, Abp., 154, 204 

Bible, revised version of, Bicker 
steth s views as to, 47, 190, 191, 199 

Biblical criticism, Bickersteth s 
views as to, 73 

Bickerstaff, Ralph, 2 

Bickersteth, Alice Frances 
(daughter), 26, 117, 125 

, Charlotte (Mrs. Ward), 88 

, Bp. Edward (son), school 

days of, 25 ; missionary work of, 
19 ; founds Cambridge Mission to 
Delhi, 32-33, 204; letters to, 
from his father, 33-49, 79-88; 
his father s visit to, 138 ; returns 
from India invalided, 49, 89; 
Bishop at Tokyo, 154, 204; 
voyage to Vancouver, 155 ; back 
to Japan with his father, 156 ; 
death of, 89 ; otherwise men 
tioned, 139-145, 159-164 

, Rev. Edward, Dean of Lich- 

field (cousin), 2 



Bickersteth, Rev. Edward (father), 
home of, at Islington, 1 ; career 
of, 3-4; appointed to Watton, 
4 ; family life, 5-7 ; letters of, 
quoted, 9, 18; death of, 19; 
otherwise mentioned, 118, 180 

, Mrs. Edward (mother), 1, 10, 26 

, Bp. Edward Henry 

Career, chronological sequence of 
Birth, 1; boyhood, 5-10; at 
Cambridge, 7-8, 11-14; or 
dained deacon, 14 ; married to 
Rosa Bignold, 15; curate of 
Banningham, 15 ; ordained 
priest, 15 ; parish work, 16-18 ; 
C.M.S. Jubilee, 19 ; curate at 
Tunbridge Wells, 19 ; pastor 
ate at flinton Martell, 19-22 ; 
accepts living of Christ Church, 
Hampstead, 22 ; visit to 
America, 30 : appointed Rural 
Dean of Highgate, 38 ; visit to 
India, 46, 137-149; visit to 
Palestine, 150-154 ; appointed 
to Deanery of Gloucester, 53 ; 
consecrated bishop, 55 ; en 
thronement address, 56 ; con 
firmations, 58-59 ; ordinations, 
59-61 ; reform of the chapter, 
63-64; Episcopal administra 
tion, 64-67 ; hospitality, 67 ; 
gathering of Nonconformist 
ministers, 68-71 ; home life 
at Exeter, 186 ; visit to Canada 
and Vancouver, 155 ; to Japan, 
82, 156-162 ; revisits Banning 
ham, 86 ; Church Congress, 



218 



INDEX 






Bickersteth, Bp. E. H. continued. 
(1894), 71-78, 86-87 ; Lambeth 
Conference (1897), 88 ; presen 
tation of portrait, 92-98 ; re 
signation, 171-177 ; removal to 
London, 177 ; death, 178 
Charges of (1888-1895), 204-213 
Letters from, to his son Edward, 

33-49, 79-88 

Memorial, brass, in Exeter Cathe 
dral, inscription for, 214 
Works of 

Bibliography of, 215-216 
Chancellor s Prize Poems, 13, 

119 
" From Year to Year," 91, 118, 

120-122 

" Hades and Heaven," 128 
Hymns, 19, 43, 136, 165, 181, 

195 ; " Peace, perfect peace," 

118-119 
Hymnal Companion." See that 

title 

" Lord s Table, The," 132 
"Master s Home Call, The," 

26, 125-127 
Poems (1849), 119 
"Psalms and Hymns (1858), 

113 
" Practical and Expository 

Commentary on the New 

Testament," 129-132, 190; 

unfinished edition of, 200- 

203 
"Reef and other Parables, 

The," 127-128 

"Rock of Ages, The," 123-124 
" Sabbath Evenings at Home," 

24 
"Shadowed Home and the 

Light Beyond, The," 128- 

129 
"Some Words of Counsel," 

132 

" Spirit of Life, The," 124-125 
" Thoughts in Past Years," 132- 

135 



Bickersteth, Bp. E. H. continued. 
Works of continued. 
"Two Brothers and Other 

Poems, The," 120 
" Yesterday, To-day and For 

Ever." See that title 
" Water from the Well Spring," 
10, 122 

, Emily (sister). See Durrant 

, Frances (sister), 10, 21 

, Rev. H. V. (son), letter to, 

from his father, 39 ; quoted, 200- 
201 

, Henry (Baron Langdale 

uncle), 2 

, Miss M., quoted, 90-92 

, Rt. Rev. Robert, Bp. of 

Ripon (cousin), 2 

, Robert (uncle), 2 

, Rev. Samuel, D.D., Vicar of 

Leeds (son), 204 

Bignold, Sarah. See Bickersteth, 
Mrs. E. (mother) 

Birks, Rev. E. B. (nephew), quoted 
on Bickersteth s career at 
Cambridge, 12-13; on life at 
Hinton Martell and Hampstead, 
23-25 

, Rev. Professor (brother-in- 
law), 7, 14 ; cited, 40 

Blunt, J. J., 12 

Body, Rev. Canon, 48 

Bramley, Prebendary, 176 

Brand, Miss, 140 

Brown, Baldwin, cited, 34, 35 

Buller, Sir Redvers, 193 

Burch, Arthur, 64 

Calvinism, Bickersteth s attitude 

towards, 47 
Cambridge Mission to Delhi, 33, 

169, 204 

Carpenter, Bp:, 38 
Carter, Canon, 36 
Carus, Wm., 11 
" Catholic Party," Bickersteth s, 

views as to phrase, 78 



INDEX 



219 



Cayley, Professor, 12 

Chavasse, Bp., 60 

Church, Dean, cited, 84-85 

Church Missionary Society 
Bickersteth, Bp., connected with, 

164-169 

Bickersteth, Rev. E., assistant- 
secretary to, 3-4 
Jubilee and Centenary of, 19 

Church Congress at Exeter (1894), 
71-78, 86-87 

Church reform, Bickersteth s atti 
tude towards, 72-73 

Clarence, H.R.H. Duke of, death, 
82 

Clark, Rev. Robert, 138, 145 

Clergy in country parishes, Bicker 
steth s Charge regarding, 208- 
211 

Clergy Pensions Institution, 75 

Clergy Superannuation, Bicker 
steth s views as to, 74-75 

Clerical Friends in Council, 45, 49 

Clinton, Lord, 97, 173 

Coates, Rev. W. H., tribute to 
Bickersteth by, 181-183 

Coleridge, 12 

Confirmations, 58-59 

Cook, Mrs. (sister), 205 

, Dr. A. R. (nephew), 205 

, Dr. J. H. (nephew), 205 

Corrie, 12 

Country parishes, 208-211 

Crediton, Bp. of, recollections of 
Bickersteth by, 184-187 

Daily services, Bickersteth s Charge 
regarding, 206-208 

Davidson, Archbishop of Canter 
bury, 155 

Davison, Miss, 150 

Dibdin, Sir Lewis, 65 

Dodge, W. E., 70, 71 

Drurnmond, Mrs., 25 

Durnf ord, Bp. , 75 

Durrant, Mrs. (sister), 205 ; quoted, 
5-6 



Durrant, Miss Emily Bickersteth 
(niece), 205 

, Rev. G. B., 141, 205 

, Rev. H. B. (nephew), 205 

Earle, Bp., 60, 63 

Edmonds, Chancellor, 60, 64 ; tri 
bute to Bickersteth by, 179-181 

Education, Bickersteth s views as 
to, 75-76 

Ellis, Rev. James, 69 

, Leslie, 12 

Erskine, Thos., cited, 39 

Evangelical Alliance, Bickersteth s 
attitude towards, 32 

Evangelical Revival (1780-1830), 85 

Evans, Canon, 12, 13 

, Miss, 140 

Evening Hours, Bickersteth s editor 
ship of, 190 

Exeter 

Bickersteth appointed to see of, 
50 ; consecrated, 55 ; his episco 
pate, 55-98 ; home life, 90-92, 
186 ; resignation, 171-177 
Chapter at, 63, 64 
Church Congress at (1894), 71-78, 

86,87 

Palace at, 89 
Royal visit to (1896), 90 

Fenn, Joseph (brother-in-law), 12, 

13 

Fortescue, Earl, quoted, 187 
Fox, Rev. H. E., 87 
French, T. Valpy, Bp., 23, 33, 34, 36, 

88,204 

Gladstone, Rt. Hon. W. E., 50, 53, 
127 

Gloucester, Deanery of, Bicker 
steth s appointment to, 53, 55 

Grenfell, Mrs. Lydia, diary of, 
quoted, 180 

Hackett, Mr., 147 

Hampstead, Bickersteth s pastorate 
at, 22, 23, 25-30, 44, 50-52 



220 



INDEX 



Hare, Julius, 12 
Havergal, Miss F. R., 42 
Hinton Marfcell, Bickersteth s pas 
torate at, 19-22, 24 
Hoare, Canon Edward, 48 
Holy Communion, Bickersteth s 

views as to, 38 
Home Reunion and Reunion of 

Christendom,Bickersteth s charge 

regarding, 211-213 
Hope, Beresford, 48 
How, Walsham, Bp., 43, 44 
Howson, Dean, 43 
Hunter, Rev. T. W. (of the S.P.G.), 

36 

Hutchings, Rev. W. H., 87 
" Hymnal Companion to the Book 

of Common Prayer" 

Annotated edition of, 45, 115, 118 

Compilation of, 113, 115-118, 
198, 199 

Popularity of, 114 

otherwise mentioned, 25, 30, 45 

Iddesleigh, Earl of, 79-80 
Ignatius, Father, 86 
India, Bickersteth s visit to (1880), 
137-150 

Jackson, Bp., 39, 50 
Jamal, Mr., 151, 152 
Japan 

Bickersteth s visit to, 156-162; 
his impressions, 162-164 

earthquake in, 160, 161 

Kennaway, Rt. Hon. Sir John, 

Bart., 92-95 
Kennedy, Mrs., 147 
King, Bp., 55, 175 j letter from, 183 
Kirkby Lonsdale, 2-8 
Kirkes, Mrs., 158 

Lambeth Conference (1897), 88 
Lefroy, Bp., 143, 204 
Leighton cited, 82 
Liddon, Canon, 55 



Lightfoot, Bp., 41, 204 ; comparison 
of, with Westcott, 42 ; death of, 
80,81 

Lloyd, Mr., 159 

Longfellow, 30 

Luard, H. R., 11, 12 

Macgregor, John, 13, 23 

Maclnnes, Miss, quoted on Bicker 
steth s work at Hampstead, 27-28 

Maclagan, Abp., 37, 44 

Macpherson, Rev. Dr., 71 

Macrae, Miss, 157 

Mahometanism, Bickersteth s atti 
tude towards, 48 

Maitland, Mr., 143 
, S. R., 12 



Martyn, Henry, 84, 85 

Matthew, Bp., 146 

Maurice, Rev. F. D., 12 

Mayor, Rev. J. E. B. (cousin), 
quoted on Bickersteth s Cam 
bridge career, 11-12 

Melville, 12 

Mill, W. H., 12 

Missions, Foreign, Bickersteth s 
zeal for, 27, 32, 33, 35, 66-67, 93, 
136, 154, 164-169, 185 ; his appeal 
for, at Church Congress (1894), 77 

Moore, Rev. H., 158 

Neville, Rev. Father W. P., 198 

Newman, fCardinal, letters from, 
112, 198 

Nicolai, Bp., 158 

Nonconformist ministers, Bicker 
steth s relations with, 68-71 

Ordinations, 59-61, 85, 185 

Palestine, Bickersteth s visit to, 
150-154 

Palmer, Dr. Ray, 30 

Paradise Lost, Bickersteth s com 
ments on, 133-134] 

Pelham, Rt. Rev. the Hon. J. T., 
22, 27, 28 



INDEX 



221 



Pennefather, Rev. W., 27 
Philpotts, Bp.,18, 57, 93 
Philpotts Exhibitions, 61 
Polygamists, baptism of, Bicker- 

steth s views as to, 169-170 
Preaching, Bickersteth s views as 

to, 34, 47 

Princetown, Confirmations at, 83 
Prynne, Rev. G. R., 194 
Punishment, eternal, Bickersteth s 

belief in, 36-36, 123 

Quiet Days. See Retreats. 

Randall, Mr., 48 

Record, extract from article in, 187 

Retreats and Quiet Days, Bicker 
steth s views as to, 31, 33-34, 38 

Ridley, Bp., 43 

Ritualistic clergy, Bickersteth s 
relations with, 61-62, 194-195 

Robinson, Mr., 159, 160 

Rundall, Capt., 143 

, Mrs. F. M. (daughter), 

quoted on life at Hinton Mar- 
tell, 21 ; on life at Hampstead, 
22-24 

Ryle, Bp., 178, 187 

Salisbury, Marquess of, 66, 187 
Sannomiya, Mr., 158 
Sanders, Archdeacon, 55 
Sandford, Archdeacon, 60, 64, 92- 

95, 173 

Scholefield, Prof., 11 
Sedgwick, Professor, 12 
Selborne, Lord, 115, 116 
Sermons, published, 132-135. See 

also Preaching. 
Shirreff, Rev. F. A. P., 146 
Smith, Miss, 146 
Society for the Propagation of the 

Gospel, 36, 169 
Speechley, Bp., 43 
Squires, Rev. H. C., 138 
Stock, Eugene, quoted on Bp. 

Bickersteth s missionary zeal, 



164-170 ; on Bp. E. Bickersteth 

of Japan, 204-205 
Stokes, Professor, 12 
Stone, Mr., 140 
Sunday Observance, Bickersteth s 

views as to, 67, 131 
Swete, Prof., 87 

Tait, Archbishop of Canterbury, 155 

, Rev. W., cited, 129 

Talbot, Bp., letter from, 177 
Tatham, Mr., 24, 45 
Teleki, Countess (cousin), 153 
Temperance, Bickersteth s policy 

regarding, 76 
Temple, Abp., 55, 93, 171, 187, 192 ; 

estimate of Bickersteth by, 57 
Tennyson, Lord, 28 note, 84 
Tennyson, Mrs., 28 and note, 84 
Thirlwall, Bp., 12 
Thorold, Bp., 23, 35, 40, 55 ; letter 

from, 71 note ; death of, 88 
Titcombe, Bp., 34 
Trefusis, Bp., 60, 64, 184 
Tristram, Canon, 43, 150 
Tunbridge Wells, Bickersteth a 

curacy at, 19 

Unitarians, Bickersteth s attitude 
towards, 123 

Vansittart, 12, 13 
Vaughan, Dean, cited, 42 
Venn, Henry, 85 

Watton 

description of, 4 

Bickersteth s life at, 5-7 
Ward, Mrs. (sister), authoress of 

".Doing and Suffering," 11 ; 

death of, 88 

Warren, Archdeacon, 160 
Weitbrecht, Rev. H. U., 146 
Westcott, Bp., 12, 204 ; comparison 

of, with Lightfoot, 42; letter 

from, 98 note 
Whitmore, Lady Lucy, 9 



INDEX 



Wigram, Rev. F. E., 165 
Wilberforce cited, 41 
Wilkinson, Bp., 40, 49 
Wilson, William Carus, 8 
Winter, Rev. R. R. and Mrs., 143 
Wright, Rev. Henry, 33, 46 

"Yesterday, To-day and For 

Ever" 

American appreciation of, 30, 37, 
156 



Yesterday, To-day, etc. continued. 

analysis of, 102-111 

cheaper issue of, 42-43 

circulation of, 112 

design of, 100 

estimate of, 100 ; by J. H. New 
man, 112 

quotations from, 102-111 

read to H.R.H. Prince of Wales, 
112 

otherwise mentioned, 25, 41, 150 



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